Jeremy Stephens misses fight

Updated: October 6, 2012, 6:49 PM ET
By Franklin McNeil | ESPN.com

Lightweight Jeremy Stephens remained in police custody Friday night, which prevented him from competing at a UFC event in Minneapolis, despite efforts by promotion president Dana White to secure his release.

Stephens' management team doesn't expect Stephens to have a chance at being released until at least Tuesday, due to the weekend and Columbus Day.

Stephens was arrested Friday morning by police officers in Minneapolis on a felony warrant stemming from an alleged assault that occurred last year in Iowa. However, Stephens and his camp said they were unaware of an outstanding warrant until the arrest on Friday. Stephens, 26, is a native of Des Moines, Iowa.

"I was willing to have two police officers bring him from jail to fight tonight and then bring him back to jail," White said after the Friday night event. "Let's do that. Let the kid get paid, because he's going to have to spend money on this thing anyway. He's got a family to take care of. It's crazy.

"I've seen crazier (stuff) than this. (Boxing champion) Floyd Mayweather got to decide when he went to jail. But this kid, on an assault charge, couldn't come out and fight today when he would have gone back to jail. I would have bailed him out. I would have (flown) him to Des Moines, Iowa, to face the charges there. I was willing to do anything and they dragged me out and played games with me all day."

Stephens' team called the UFC "beyond stellar," "great and very supportive" in everything they did in trying to procure Stephens' release.

"Jeremy knew that he did nothing involved in this case, nor did he anticipate this ever to come back on him," said a member of Stephens' team. "Jeremy would have handled this immediately if (Des Moines police) contacted him or he (had) a way to know he had a warrant for his friend assaulting someone at his party."

The 155-pound fighter, who has a 20-8 professional record, was slated to face Yves Edwards in a UFC on FX 5 preliminary bout at Target Center.

White said that Edwards will be paid his agreed-upon fee for the event and is expected to appear on a UFC card in the near future.

Information from ESPN.com's Josh Gross was used in this report.

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