Guilty plea in crash that killed Bellator fighter Jordan Parsons

Friday, August 10, 2018

Jordan Parsons was a promising professional MMA fighter, training at Blackzilians, and fighting successfully in Bellator MMA.

Then on May 10, 2016, he was hit by an SUV, driving at a reported 100-120 miles per hour, as seen in this CCTV footage.

The driver then sped away. Parsons had his leg amputated, and after several days, he passed away from the injuries sustained.

Now the Palm Beach Post reports his killer has pleaded guilty and will serve ten years in jail.

Before Palm Beach County Judge Laura Johnson, Dennis Michael Wright , 30, pleaded guilty to DUI manslaughter, leaving the scene of a crashing involving death, and tampering with or fabricating physical evidence.

As part of the deal, Wright will get 10 years in prison if he "tells the truth about his alcohol consumption and actions on April 30/31, including the speed he was driving when he struck and killed (Parsons) and his actions from the time he struck (Parsons) until the time he turned himself in," according to court records. Wright is set to be sentenced Aug. 29.

Wright left the scene and attempted to get his car repaired. A car body shop turned him away, so police say Wright hid the car in storage. An anonymous tipster eventually went to authorities with Wright’s name, and he was arrested nearly a week after the crash.

In addition to a prison sentence, Wright’s plea deal states he will have to carry around a photo of Parsons at all times and speak at local schools about the dangers of drinking and driving once he is out on probation, according to court records.

In a tragic addition to the tragedy, Parsons' autopsy revealed the first diagnosis of CTE in an MMA fighter. Currently, CTE can only be definitively diagnosed postmortem by direct brain tissue examination, so there are undoubtedly others.