Pro Wrestling

15 Pro Wrestlers And Their Incredibly Unflattering Mugshots Source:

Because professional wrestlers are often treated like they are superheroes come to life, it’s easy to forget that behind the gimmicks, wrestlers are just as human as we are. And sometimes, humans make mistakes, and end up having run-ins with the law. Unlike normal people, however, wrestlers, like other athletes and celebrities, get the dubious honor of having their mugshots circulated around the Internet, a constant reminder of their past transgressions. Here are some of the more well-known examples of those times that wrestlers found themselves in legal trouble.

15. Kurt Angle

One of the biggest reasons why Kurt Angle hasn’t made his way back to WWE after leaving a decade ago is that his post-WWE life has been littered with run-ins with the law, as he has several arrests for driving while intoxicated, the last one as recently as 2013. Angle was also arrested for allegedly stalking his ex-girlfriend and former TNA Knockout Rhaka Khan while driving on a suspended license, with a controlled substance in his car (that would be HGH, for which Angle revealed he had a prescription). It should be noted that this arrest literally took place right before a TNA Pay Per View which Angle was headlining. Those charges were eventually dropped, however. Source:

14. MVP

During his WWE career, it was occasionally mentioned that Montel Vontavious Porter had a criminal record and had actually been in jail prior to becoming a wrestler. In fact, MVP’s trademark bodysuit that was part of his ring gear was designed in order to cover up several less-than-acceptable prison tattoos. However, the extent of MVP’s early life is fairly shocking. After joining a gang at 12, MVP spent six months in a juvenile detention facility for his role in a robbery. After that, at sixteen, he served 9.5 years (of an 18.5 year sentence) after he was convicted of armed robbery and kidnapping. While in prison, MVP converted to Islam, and turned his life around, becoming a pro wrestler and winning multiple titles in WWE in the process. Source:

13. Brock Lesnar

Brock Lesnar’s legal troubles are actually a fairly interesting story, as he was arrested by police after opening a package which was claimed to contain anabolic steroids. Due to the large amount he had received, Lesnar was charged with drug trafficking. However, Lesnar was quickly exonerated, when it was revealed that the pills were not, in fact, steroids, but actually a perfectly legal (if still somewhat questionable) growth hormone. The police department which arrested Lesnar was allegedly incredibly apologetic for the misunderstanding, and in return, Brock graciously allowed them to live. Source:

12. X-Pac

X-Pac’s path through pro wrestling has been marred by all sorts of tragedy, as a combination of various substance abuse issues and failed relationships left him a fairly broken man, even attempting suicide on multiple occasions before being placed in rehab by several of his closest friends. Strangely enough, however, X-Pac was never arrested for any crimes, although he did turn himself in in relation to charges for possession of controlled substances in 2011, when this mugshot was taken. X-Pac was never jailed for the offense, and was released on bail the next morning. Source:

11. Kevin Nash

You often hear about the horror stories of families getting together at Christmas, but for Kevin Nash, the story was all too real. Late on Christmas Eve, Nash was arrested and charged with battery against his teenage son. However, the story doesn’t end there, as only hours later, police returned to Nash’s home and arrested his son for battery against Nash’s wife (who was also his mother, we realize that might need clarification in this day and age). Eventually, Nash was released, and several weeks later, prosecutors announced that they would not pursue charges against him. For his part, Nash maintained that he was defending his wife against an assault by his son, who was also never formally charged. Source:

10. Big Show

Back when he was still in WCW, and also had ridiculously long hair (which seems impossible to believe these days), The Big Show was arrested in 1998 for allegedly exposing himself to a female motel employee, giving up this sleepy-eyed mugshot. The charges against Show were later dropped due to a lack of evidence. Some blamed the very loose restrictions of the WCW environment on this and several other incidents which occurred over the years, and Show himself has said that by the time he made it to WWE, he was an “a**hole”, due to how he’d basically been allowed to do whatever he wanted up to that point. Source:

9. Ric Flair

It’s probably shocking that there aren’t more mug shots of the notoriously hard-living, hard-drinking, original party boy Ric Flair, but this one was actually taken after he was arrested in relation to a road rage incident in late 2005, where it was alleged that he actually attempted to choke another motorist, and also damaged a car by kicking it. Flair was charged with injury to personal property and simple assault and battery, both misdemeanors, and was back on WWE programming almost immediately. His arrest was actually used as fodder for a feud between Flair and the Rated R Superstar, Edge. Source:

8. Andre The Giant

The mammoth Andre the Giant was one of the most respected and beloved characters in wrestling for most of his career, so it’s almost hard to believe that the normally genial Giant would get in any sort of trouble. However, while acting in character during his heel run in WWE, Andre was arrested in 1989 for allegedly getting into a physical altercation with a TV cameraman. We would argue that if Andre really wanted to hurt someone, he’d probably do more than just rough them up a little. Source:

7. Chris Jericho

Jericho, along with “Hurricane” Shane Helms, was arrested when the two wrestlers allegedly got into a drunken fight while riding in a taxi, and were charged with public intoxication. Jericho basically escaped any serious punishment, but Helms was released from his WWE contract a month later, and would later suffer serious injuries as a result of a car accident while driving under the influence. Jericho actually addressed his heavy partying lifestyle in his autobiographies, which does not make him come across well at all. Source:

6. Rey Mysterio

After a tragic accident in the ring led to the death of noted luchador Perro Aguayo Jr in 2015, authorities arrested his opponent, Rey Mysterio, with potential manslaughter charges anticipated. The claim was that Mysterio’s patented 619 finisher had led to Aguayo’s eventual death from a stroke caused by severe spinal trauma.. However, Mysterio was later released, and cleared of any wrongdoing, as it was revealed that Aguayo’s cause of death was both accidental and completely unrelated Mysterio’s actions. Mysterio actually took the tragedy very hard, and was one of the pallbearers at Aguayo’s funeral. Source:

5. Shawn Michaels

This mugshot is a true mystery of professional wrestling, as Michaels was arrested in Kentucky for reasons that have never been revealed. In fact, we don’t even know the exact date of Michaels’ arrest, as this mugshot that has circulated is the only proof that it even happened. However, given what we know about Michaels’ early career as part of a team with Marty Jannetty, we feel pretty safe in assuming it was drug or alcohol-related. Source:

4. Scott Hall

Scott Hall has been arrested for alcohol and drug-related indiscretions so many times that we literally just picked the mugshot we liked the best. We suppose that if we had been in police custody a half-dozen times, we’d start to have fun with our mugshots too. It doesn’t seem like a good idea, but we can see how it might if we were intoxicated. Hall’s substance abuse issues were so extreme and well-known, that his continued sobriety was actually a requirement of his contract when he signed with WWE in 2002. Unfortunately, he failed in that responsibility, and was released only a few months after returning. Hall eventually entered DDP’s ‘Accountability Crib’ rehabilitation program to deal with his issues. Source:

3. Booker T

Possibly the most well-known story of criminal activity in pro wrestling, Booker T was arrested as a teenager for a series of armed robberies against local Wendy’s restaurants, where Booker actually worked. Booker would plead guilty to the charges and severed 19 months in prison. This story has a happy ending, however, as Booker began training as a wrestler after his release, and would eventually become a 5-time, 5-time, 5-time, 5-time, 5-time WCW Champion and WWE Hall of Famer. Source:

2. Steve Austin

In 2001, just after WrestleMania X8, Steve Austin underwent a much-publicized split with WWE that saw him walk out of the company on two separate occasions, with the second one resulting in him not returning to the company for nearly an entire year. Unfortunately, shortly after leaving, Austin found himself in serious hot water, as he was arrested and charged with domestic abuse, after his wife Debra called the police to their home and claimed Austin had hit her several times. Austin plead “No Contest” to the charges and was given community service and a small fine, as well as a year-long probation which also prohibited him from drinking alcohol. Source:

1. Jeff Hardy

Only weeks after leaving WWE in 2009 (which had initially been intended to give him time to recover from several injuries), Jeff Hardy was the target of a police raid on his house. While Hardy had battled with substance abuse issues in the past, those paled in comparisons to the results of this investigation, which turned up a variety of prescription drugs, including Vicodin and Soma, anabolic steroids, significant cocaine residue, and various drug paraphernalia. Hardy was charged with drug trafficking (due to the large amount of pills) and steroid possession, eventually pleading guilty. Hardy was sentenced to ten days in jail, a $100,000 fine, and 30 months of probation. During that period, Hardy’s status as a convicted felon meant that he was unable to travel with his new employers, TNA Wrestling, when they went on overseas tours. Source:
Stephen Randle

Stephen Randle

Stephen Randle is an avid wrestling and film fan. He's been writing about WWE, movies, and video games for Goliath since 2015.