FLINT (WJRT) (2/11/2020) – Claressa Shields’ brother pleaded guilty to assaulting an opposing fighter’s trainer before their weigh-in at the Dort Financial Event Center in Flint.
Artis Mack pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of aggravated assault for punching boxing trainer James Bashir Ali on Oct. 3, minutes before Shields and Ivana Habazin were scheduled to weigh in for their fight scheduled for Oct. 4.
After Mack punched Ali in the face inside the arena, he fled the area on foot. A Flint police officer on duty at Walter Scott Elementary School across from the arena arrested him.
Ali was transported to a Detroit hospital, where he underwent surgery for significant facial injuries. The Showtime title fight was postponed until January, when Shields beat Habazin in New Jersey to win her third title in a third weight class.
Mack faces up to a year in jail when he is sentenced in March. He initially was charged with a felony of assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder, but took a plea agreement to the misdemeanor aggravated assault charge.
Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said the judge, who watched a video of the punch, will have some discretion on the sentence.