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Michael Bisping being sued for allegedly choking teenager at a gym

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Just over a week away from UFC 217, Michael Bisping has more to worry about than just Georges St-Pierre.

The UFC middleweight champion is being sued by a teenager, who claims Bisping choked him at an Anaheim, Calif., gym in July, MMA Fighting confirmed Wednesday. TMZ was the first to report the story Tuesday night.

Antonio Georgakopoulos, 19, is accusing Bisping of assault, battery and false imprisonment in the alleged incident, which took place at a 24-Hour Fitness gym on July 31, according to the complaint filed Monday in California Superior Court in Orange County and obtained by MMA Fighting.

According to the complaint written by attorney Gavril T. Gabriel, Georgakopolous was working out with a friend at the 24-Hour Fitness when he turned to pick up weights a few feet away. The friend, per the complaint, could hear someone yelling at Georgakopoulous for taking his weights. That man was allegedly Bisping, who called Georgakopolous an “idiot,” “you little punk,” and said, “you don’t know who I am!”

The complaint alleges that Bisping then extended his right arm and choked Georgakopoulous for “two to three seconds,” not allowing him to breathe. “A larger man” stepped in to break it up, but Bisping asked to take it outside, per the complaint. That’s when 24-Hour Fitness staff got involved and separated Bisping, Georgakopolous and the crowd that gathered.

In the complaint, it states that the Anaheim Police arrived and issued a private persons arrest form for assault and battery to Bisping.

But Anaheim PD public information officer Sgt. Daron Wyatt told MMA Fighting that no arrest was made. An investigation was submitted to the City Attorney’s office and “it was determined there was insufficient evidence to file a criminal case,” Wyatt said.

Georgakopolous had “intense throat pain” the next day and saw a specialist, who recommended treatment, according to the complaint. Georgakopolous also had “nightmares, difficulty sleeping and anxiety” as a result of Bisping’s actions, per the complaint.

The complaint also names WME-IMG, the UFC’s parent company, and 24-Hour Fitness. The other accusations are “intentional infliction of emotional distress,” vicarious liability, negligent supervision and “negligence-premises liability.”

A request to Bisping’s team for comment on the lawsuit was not returned.

Bisping, who has been UFC middleweight champ since June 2016, defends the title against St-Pierre in the main event of UFC 217 on Nov. 4 in New York. It is expected to be one of the biggest fight cards of the year for the UFC.

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