Seattle fighter/Superhero fired from day job

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Undefeated amateur MMA fighter Ben ‘Flattop’ Fodor, brother of Strikeforce Caros Fodor, has an unusual side job – superhero. After training, Jones  ducks into a comic store in civilian clothing, goes into a secret back room, and emerges as ‘Phoenix Jones.’ Clad in a bulletproof vest, stab plates and armed with a Taser night stick and Mace, this Seattle superhero prowls the night in search of villains to call the police on.

Unfortunately, early last month he was arrested by city police after allegedly pepper spraying a group of men and women involved in a murky commotion. Now the arrest has led to termination by his employers.

Jones explained that he has worked with five developmentally disabled autistic children—who ranged in age from four to 18 years old—for the last five years at their homes and state care facilities, going shopping with them, teaching them to balance checkbooks, and going for walks.

Last week, Jones received a letter from the state Department of Social and Health Services, informing him he is no longer allowed to work with kids.

“I had to leave work in the middle of the day,” Jones says. “It was embarrassing.

Jones says that because of his arrest, he’s on “a list” that prohibits him from working with children, because he has “a history of interjecting myself into situations that are dangerous.”

Jones disputes that characterization. “I would say I have a history of fighting crime,” he says. “The whole point of what I do is to keep people safe.”

Jones isn’t sure how he’ll pay the bills now. He says he’s received offers for fight bouts from the Strikeforce mixed martial arts organization, and plans to start fighting crime in the daytime, in addition to his night patrols around Seattle. Other than that, he says, “I really don’t know.”

Prosecutors have not filed charges for the incident, and a spokeswoman for the city attorney’s office says the case is still being investigated.

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