Retired former fighter Vinny Paz has been released after turning himself in on a felony assault charge in Rhode Island.
Paz, who was a two-division world champion, is known for his comeback story after a car crash, which was dramatized in the 2016 film "Bleed for This." He is accused of biting a man, knocking out his teeth and sending him to the hospital.
He appeared in Providence District Court on Wednesday, not long after turning himself in on a warrant issued Tuesday. He did not enter a plea and was released on personal recognizance.
Witnesses told police that Paz accused the man of stealing $16,000. The retired champ made a series of statements on Tuesday defending his actions. He told WPRI-TV that he got robbed, "and when that happens, you gotta do what you gotta do."
The man was taken to the hospital with injuries including several broken teeth, a black eye and bite marks that drew blood. Witnesses told police that Paz left before police got there.
Police issued an arrest warrant for Paz on one count of felony assault later Tuesday.
The ex-champion made a series of statements on Twitter and to a local TV station on Tuesday, telling people to ”stop” with the nonsense story and defending his actions.
”Bottom line is, I got robbed. And when that happens, you gotta do what you gotta do,” he said in a brief interview with WPRI-TV outside his home in Warwick, before getting into an SUV and being driven away.
”NO COMMENT !!!!! I’m the bad guy oh really ??? I’m the victim !!! STOP,” he wrote in one Twitter message .
Paz retired from boxing in 2004. Since then, he has had several brushes with the law, including a 2012 no-contest plea to disorderly conduct for a fight with two women at a Providence bar. He also pleaded no contest in 2007 to drunken driving.
”Bleed for This,” starring Miles Teller as Paz, tells the story of his return to boxing after breaking his neck in a car crash.