An MMA fighter nicknamed 'AK47' has been charged with murder after a doctor was stabbed to death, seemingly over a dispute about COVID-19 vaccines
MMAfighter nicknamed "AK47" has been charged with murder after a doctor was killed on Guam.
- Akmal Khozhiev is accused of stabbing Dr. Miran Ribati with an animal bone, per local media.
The MMA fighter Akmal Khozhiev has been charged with murder after a doctor was stabbed to death in what appeared to start with a dispute over COVID-19 vaccines, according to several local media reports, including The Guam Daily Post.
The 27-year-old was arrested in Tamuning, a village on the US Pacific territory of Guam, on November 7 after police officers responded to a stabbing at a block of apartments.
According to The Guam Daily Post, Dr. Miran Ribati, a local radiologist, was found lying face down in a pool of blood near a staircase.
Video footage shown on the local news channel PNC Guam appears to show police officers detaining Khozhiev outside an apartment building. In the footage, a man can be seen lying on the ground handcuffed before being lifted up by the police and led away. He appears to have blood on his hands and feet.
Local media reports say a witness told the police that Ribati and Khozhiev knew each other from a local gym and had been arguing about COVID-19 vaccinations when things turned violent.
Khozhiev was said to have wrapped his arms around Ribati's neck and choked him before a witness intervened, The Guam Daily Post reported, citing documents.
The police said that Khozhiev's mother and sister tried to stop the attack but were also assaulted, per PNC Guam, and that the MMA fighter grabbed an animal bone from the kitchen that was left over from dinner and stabbed Ribati repeatedly in the neck.
Khozhiev is further accused of stabbing Ribati with a knife in the building's stairwell area as Ribati tried to flee.
The Guam Daily Post says Khozhiev was charged with aggravated murder as a first-degree felony and aggravated assault as a second-degree felony in the Superior Court of Guam on Wednesday.
'AK wasn't AK anymore'
Khozhiev — who is originally from Uzbekistan and goes by the nickname "AK47" — was a trainer at a local gym until three months ago.
Steel Athletics' owner, JJ Ambrose, told KUAM News that he had let Khozhiev go then because Khozhiev had been threatening staff members and customers. On one occasion, he was seen on video pushing a person to the ground and kicking and punching them before being pulled away, KUAM reported.
"He was such a great person up until he wasn't," Ambrose said. "We did everything we possibly could to warn people that AK wasn't AK anymore."
Ambrose added that he told the police that he had seen Khozhiev become increasingly violent.
"It's very hard 'cause I know when you're friends with two people and those two people are on the outs you don't want to take sides — you want to ride in the middle," he continued.
A video published on Khozhiev's Instagram profile on November 3 shows him claiming that COVID-19 vaccines are "killing" people.
"You all think I'm playing with you?" he said. "But for real, no more fucking vaccines. What the fuck are you thinking about? It's killing you."
COVID-19 vaccinations have been repeatedly proved to be safe and effective in lowering the risk of serious illness or death from the disease.
The Guam Memorial Hospital Authority issued a statement on Ribati's death, saying it was shocked and saddened.
"Dr. Ribati was an Interventional Radiologist at GMHA, serving the community for over three years," the GMHA said, per PNC Guam. "His talents were undeniable and impeccable; his passion unparalleled; his accolades from patients in droves.
"He will be sorely missed among colleagues, staff and the entire Guam healthcare community."
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