Penn recovering at home after traffic collision

  • Former two-division UFC champion BJ Penn is seen in his Kinoole Street gym in Hilo in this Tribune-Herald file photo.

UFC Hall of Fame mixed martial artist BJ Penn is recovering at home in Hilo after suffering a concussion in traffic accident last Friday night on Kanoelehua Avenue near Prince Kuhio Plaza.

That’s according to Penn’s mother, Lorraine Shin, who spoke today to the Tribune-Herald.

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The 41-year-old Penn, who held UFC titles in both the lightweight and welterweight divisions, was found unconscious on the pavement near the black Toyota Tacoma truck he was driving, Shin said. Shin said she owns the truck, which is registered to her company, MS Petroleum.

Police said Penn — whose legal name is Jay Dee Penn — was taken to Hilo Medical Center in guarded condition after the collision, which took place at about 7:40 p.m. Shin said Penn was released from the hospital at about midnight.

She said Penn has no memory of the incident.

Police said they believe speed and alcohol were involved and are investigating the incident. The result of their investigation will be forwarded to prosecutors, police said in a Wednesday statement

“BJ’s very sorry this has happened,” Shin said. “And to all his fans, he’s getting better and he thanks them all for their support and prayers.”

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A full story will appear in Friday’s Tribune-Herald.

Email John Burnett at jburnett@hawaiitribune-herald.com.

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