By David Ovalle
Prosecutors have dropped charges against star fighter Conor McGregor, who was accused of smashing and stealing a fan’s phone outside a Miami Beach hotel.
The State Attorney’s Office announced the decision Monday because the victim, who has already settled a civil lawsuit with McGregor, stopped cooperating with investigators. Prosecutor Khalil Madani announced in court that the victim recanted his story.
“The victim of the crime does not wish to return to the United States and prosecute this case,” Madani said.
McGregor did not appear in court for Monday’s brief hearing.
“I think this was the appropriate resolution of this case,” said his defense lawyer, Sam Rabin.
The 30-year-old fighter was arrested on March 11 after the dust-up with fan Ahmed Abdirzak, who along with other onlookers tried taking video of McGregor outside the iconic Fontainebleau hotel. McGregor walked up to him, extended his left hand as if to shake his hand and then angrily “punched” the phone out of the man’s hand, according to a lawsuit later filed by the fan.
The phone fell on the ground and McGregor stomped on it repeatedly, the suit said. “The defendant then picked up the smashed phone and slipped it into his pocket before strutting to a waiting SUV,” the lawsuit said.
Abdirzak, a resident of England, later dropped his lawsuit after reaching an out-of-court settlement with McGregor. Prosecutors charged McGregor with robbery by sudden snatching and criminal mischief.
Shortly after the settlement was reached, Abdirzak’s attorney wrote to the prosecutor to say the victim “had been made whole” by McGregor. Abdirzak claimed after he “had some time to reflect” on the encounter with McGregor, he didn’t think the fighter meant to injure him or damage his phone, according to a final memo by the State Attorney’s Office.
McGregor is a former two-division Ultimate Fighting Championship title holder who famously fought and lost to boxing legend Floyd Mayweather in August 2017. He was planning a comeback, but then retired the same day The New York Times reported he was under investigation in Ireland on allegations of sexual assault.