MMA Fighter Faked Own Death, Charged With Armed Robbery, Assault With Intent to Murder

Michael RowanCharles Rowan would have got away with it too, if it weren’t for those meddling armed robbery and assault charges.

Rowan, a Detroit MMA fighter, faked his own death in February, according to USA Today. Rowan’s fight team, Diamond D, raised $1,350 for Rowan’s “funeral” two weeks ago through a benefit event, Fight for Charlie.

Rowan’s girlfriend, Rosalinda Martinez, called Scott DiPonio, owner of Diamond D, on the night of Rowan’s fifth MMA bout. Martinez claimed that Rowan had been in a fatal car crash on the way to the match. DiPonio gave Rowan’s family $150 for expenses the next day.

DiPonio realized he had been scammed when he saw Rowan’s mugshot come up on the news. Rowan, Martinez and friend Michael Bowman had been arrested on charges of armed robbery and assault with intent to murder. The three held up Guns and Stuff in Sage Township, Mich., on Monday. They severely beat the store’s owner, Richard Robinette, who is in serious but stable condition.

DiPonio had doubts about Rowan’s death, but wanted to be sensitive to the fighter’s family. He said he noticed there was no obituary and no funeral service.

“I didn’t know exactly how to handle it,” DiPonio said. “I didn’t want to go off and say, ‘We’re not doing this. Something’s not right,’ and then have the incident having really happened.”

DiPonio and his partner at Diamond D, Christos Piliafras, plan on filing a fraud claim against Rowan.

So this is really a lesson for everyone. If you’re going to fake your own death and scam someone out of almost $1,500, don’t get arrested a month later for robbing a gun store. It’s that easy.

Photo via Facebook/Gladwin County Record & Beaverton Clarion

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