Jeremy Stephens, left, is a UFC fighter; Jerramy Stevens, right, is a former… (lilheathenmma.com; David…)
Jeremy Stephens spent 12 days in jail last month, missing his Oct. 5 UFC fight against Yves Edwards, for a crime he says he didn't commit.
It's difficult to imagine how he felt Wednesday morning when he found his name linked to another alleged crime that he definitely didn't commit.
Early in the morning, Stephens' name was the highest-trending search term on Google for no apparent reason at the time. It took awhile, but eventually an explanation surfaced as another athlete whose name sounds the same but is spelled differently -- former NFL player Jerramy Stevens -- started trending as well.
Pay attention now, this could get confusing.
It turns out that Stevens the football player was arrested early Monday on suspicion of assaulting his fiance, U.S. women's soccer team goalkeeper Hope Solo. He was released Tuesday without being charged, but the case is still being investigated.
Apparently the news was just starting to make the rounds on social media Wednesday morning when Stephens' name got dragged into the mess. Even now, with Stevens trending at No. 1 on Google, Stephens is still at No. 4. And there are still a couple people tweeting about the wrong guy in connection with the Solo incident as well.
Unfortunately for Stephens, all this free publicity isn't necessarily good news. Those who search online for his name will see that he's a lightweight MMA fighter, currently signed with UFC, with 20 wins (14 by knockout and three by submission) in 28 fights.
But they will also learn of his Oct. 5 arrest in connection with an out-of-state warrant stemming from a 2011 incident that resulted in charges of willful injury and assault causing bodily harm. He was released from custody on Oct. 17.
"Jeremy’s legal team is already hard at work to prove what many already know; he is not guilty of the crimes he’s been accused of," said a statement posted on Stephens' website.
The statement also asked for Stephens' privacy to be respected throughout the case.
Well, so much for that.
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