The ESPN lead-in paragraphs pretty much says it all: 

Mixed martial arts promoters Christos Piliafas and Scott DiPonio were shocked to learn that one of their fighters was a suspect in the holdup of a Michigan gun shop this week.

After all, it was only two weeks ago that they raised more than $1,000 to help the amateur heavyweight's family pay for his funeral.

Yep, it's as dramatic as it sounds. Mixed martial arts fighter Charles Rowana struggle fighter with a 1-3 recordfaked his car crash death to promoters. The two didn't find out they've been gypped until Rowan's mug shot showed up on television after his alleged role in a Michigan gun shop robbery. Pillafas and DiPonio had already raised about $1,350 in donations for Rowan's family.

The whole thing looked shady to begin with. Rowan was "on his way" to compete in his fifth bout when his girlfriend, Rosalinda Martinez, called DiPonio from Rowan's number to say he's been in a car wreck. DiPonio and his girlfriend went to visit Rowan's residence, where they saw "young kids and grandparents crying." This could've fooled a lot of people, of course.

And like a lot of people would be, the promoters were pissed. Pillafas said, "It made me sick to my stomach. I was furious. I was livid. It's not so much about the money. It's just how many people were involved in this scam...The little bit that I knew [about] this kid, I never would have thought that he'd try to pull some Machiavelli crap like that."

Would Machiavelli even approve of Rowan's actions, though?

RELATED: The 50 Most Infamous Criminals in Sports History

[via ESPN]