Ed. Note: Tyndall Air Force officials confirmed Tuesday that the victim in this incident is an airman. A statement from the base has been added to this story. Also, the victim’s identity has been released by the Panama City Beach Police Department.
PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — An amateur MMA fighter was arrested after he allegedly killed another man in the parking lot of a Panama City Beach bar.
Ross Allen Johnson, 23, of Cartersville, Ill., was charged with manslaughter by the Panama City Beach Police Department. The incident happened Sunday night in the parking lot of a bar in the 10500 block of Front Beach Road.
Police wrote that Johnson is an amateur mixed martial artist with a record of five wins and two losses and three years of “advanced fighter training.”
Johnson was running towards a fight involving a friend when he struck another man behind the ear, police added. That man was 31-year-old Dayvon Larry, of Malone, Fla.
Police noted that Johnson never attempted to get help for Larry after he knocked him out.
Instead, Johnson left Larry laying in the parking lot and continued toward the fight where he engaged in a skirmish with another man, police wrote.
When that second fight was over, Johnson left the area and stayed in a hotel room while allegedly trying to avoid the investigators, officers wrote.
When he was finally taken into custody, investigators said Johnson gave them multiple different accounts of what happened including that he simply pushed the man. However, Johnson allegedly told a woman on Snapchat about the victim and wrote, “Dude is still not moving.”
They added that Johnson allegedly told a witness, “Man I hit that guy, I laid him out, and I think I killed him.”
An arrest report states the victim died from blunt force trauma to the head. An autopsy revealed a “softball” size bruise on the victim behind his left ear and a skull fracture. The victim was an airman at Tyndall Air Force Base. Base officials said he was an Airman First Class and a member of the 325th Security Forces Squadron.
“Tyndall officials can confirm that there was an airman death that occurred in PCB on April 10th 2023,” Tyndall Public Affairs officials said Tuesday. “This is a devastating loss for team Tyndall our thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends and fellow airman during this tough time.”