Restraining Order Filed Against B.J. Penn by Estranged Partner Alleging Physical, Sexual Abuse

BJ Penn, UFC 237, Clay Guida
BJ Penn Credit: Dave Mandel/

Serious accusations have emerged regarding UFC fighter and Hall of Fame member B.J. Penn, who is expected to take part in UFC 237 in Brazil this May.

After accusations of violence against Matt Hughes by his estranged wife rocked the MMA world just months ago, another UFC legend has been hit with similar allegations. UFC Hall of Fame member B.J. Penn, expected to return to action at the upcoming UFC 237, has had a restraining order filed against him by the mother of his children.

MMA Junkie, citing court records, reported the news Wednesday. Shealen Uaiwa, the mother of his children, was granted a temporary restraining order plus a petition for an order of protection by Hawaii Family Court in October 2018, according to the report. Cageside Press subsequently confirmed that Uaiwa had initiated a non-criminal case in Hawaii’s Family Court for a temporary restraining order on October 9, 2018. According to further reporting by MMA Junkie, that restraining order was extended in February, and will expire in February 2021.

The allegations behind the retraining order are, without question, serious. A signed statement from Uaiwa alleges that Penn verbally harassed and threatened both her and mother, specifically in an incident that occurred on October 7, 2018. Uiawa included in her statement that Penn was “currently an MMA fighter and he’s being aggressive.” She also alleged that Penn told her “because your (sic) not a man you think you can’t get knocked the f*ck out.”

Penn, according to Uaiwa, also threatened to kill her brother, and told her that he could kill her whole family. Penn’s children were present for at least some of this confrontation. No context was provided as to how the altercation began.

In the same statement, referring to different instances over the course of their ten year relationship, Uaiwa claimed that she had “endured verbal abuse, physical abuse” and that Penn had hit her in the back of the head, and “back handed me.” She also stated that Penn tried to convince her to have sex with other men, and that Penn had been abusing drugs including marijuana and cocaine. While high, she alleged, Penn would demand she perform sexual acts and become angry if she refused.

“I have not reported any of these incidents because of his name, reputation, the control he has had over my life and I was scared,” she wrote. The statement is dated October 5, 2018.

Penn’s attorney, John Schmidtke Jr., said in a statement to MMA Junkie that the allegations contained “incomplete information.”


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