Joe Schilling will not have to pay bar patron for viral knockout, judge in Florida says.
In July 2021, Justin Balboa sued Schilling for $30,000, he also sued the bar where the incident took place.
According to MMA Fighting, Schilling used the controversial Florida law because he “reasonably believed” Balboa “posed a threat of great bodily harm to himself.”
The judge, Fabienne E. Fahnestock, found his defense to be valid and on April 19 ruled that “the court further finds that Schilling used only such force necessary to neutralize the threat, and is therefore entitled to immunity, “ Fahnestock wrote in the court order.
Schilling took to Instagram to share his thoughts on the ruling, and took one last dig at the man he knocked out.
""I’m glad it’s finally over. For the last two years my name and character has been disparaged in the media, seem like everyone loves the narrative that a professional fighter just beat up some innocent person, which was soooooo not the case. Most people told me to just settle it and pay him off as that would be easier. I don’t like bully’s and I refuse to be bullied by anyone. The ambulance chasing crumb bum of a lawyer he hired threatened to ruin me financially and well the only person he financially ruined was his client. I just hope that all of the news outlets that were so quick to post click bait articles assassinating my character have the same energy now that the truth is out. Justin Balboa is and will always be a f***ing loser"- Schilling, via Instagram
The initial incident occurred in late June 2021 and was filmed by another bar patron. Witnesses claimed (and the video shows) Balboa taunting Schilling before he's KO'd by two punches from Schilling.
Shortly after the video made the rounds, Schilling was criticized for the scene, to which he responded: “Self-defense is apparently not what this country is about anymore. Don’t trip, I got the video. Love you guys, thanks for the concern and support during my life threatening experience. Big shout out to The Yard Muay Thai for preparing me for this life threatening situation.”
At the time of the incident Schilling was training at Sanford MMA (Now Kill Cliff MMA) in South Florida.