Jon Jones took to the the streets of Albuquerque, N.M. on Monday to make a difference in his community amid a series of George Floyd protests.
Throughout the day and night, Jones shared a series of Instagram stories—which began with arriving with a crew of teammates from Jackson Wink MMA, to assisting in boarding up broken windows, cleaning up glass, encouraging others in the community to reach out or assist in the efforts.
As day turned to night, the mission may have changed, but the goal was still the same: keep the streets of Albuquerque safe, secure and peaceful during the protests. Several other volunteers joined Jones, and relayed a message to the people of his community before the boots hit the ground via his IG stories.
“I called upon some of the men of Albuquerque, N.M. and quite a few showed up,” Jones stated. “We are fathers, we are brothers, we are business owners, we are members of this community, and we do not want to see you guys spray painting for no reason. We don’t want to see you guys throwing rocks through windows for no reason. We don’t want to see you breaking down hard-earned businesses for no reason.
“Tonight, we’re gonna try and stop as many of you guys as we can. We come in peace. We’re gonna use our voices, our numbers, and we’re gonna be the difference.”
According to Jones, there was only “one incident of looters downtown and they were taken down quick.” The UFC light heavyweight champion thanked his fellow community members, as well as the Albuquerque Police Department for their efforts early Tuesday morning.
On Sunday night, Jones made headlines for taking spray paint cans from individuals that were planning to vandalize the city. There have been hundreds of rallies and protests around the U.S. in response to Minneapolis police officer David Chauvin being shown on video kneeling on the neck of Floyd for nine minutes, which lead to his death.
Since then, other UFC fighters and champions—past and present—have stepped up to the plate in their own ways. Middleweight champion Israel Adesanya joined a group of approximately 4,000 people in New Zealand to protest Floyd’s wrongful death across the globe.
In addition, former light heavyweight champion Chuck Liddell was seen trying to keep the peace during protests in Huntington Beach, Calif. While Jones is in his own fight against Dana White and the UFC, he’s put that to the side for something far more important than championship belts and multi-million dollar paydays.
Chauvin has since been arrested and charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter for his role in Floyd’s death.