Before sports, Clifford Etienne was basically a dumb high school kid, who held up some customers at a shopping mall, mostly because. Though 17, Etienne was tried as an adult and received a 40-year sentence. While behind bars, Etienne took up boxing and amassed a 30-0 record, en route to becoming the champion of the Louisiana state prison’s boxing circuit (which is a thing).
With good behavior, Etienne’s sentence was cut way down to 10 years, and he immediately went pro upon his 1998 parole. Etienne rose through the boxing ranks faster than Little Mac from Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out, winning 19 of his first 20 fights and compiling a 24-1-1 record by 2003. His status as a rising star was tarnished somewhat in 2003, however, after Mike Tyson proved tougher than his videogame counterpart, knocking out Etienne just 49 seconds into the first round of their heavily publicized bout.
Etienne continued boxing over the next two years, but was soon back to his old criminal ways. In August 2005, Etienne broke into a check-cashing place in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and stole $1,900. To get away, he tried to steal a car with two kids inside. When that didn’t work, he stole another car … which also had two children inside. He didn’t get far before he wrecked this one and, with police catching up to him, he fired his gun, which malfunctioned.
He didn’t give his lawyers much to work with: they argued that Etienne was so high on drugs he wasn’t aware of his actions, and that he’d also suffered brain damage from his boxing career. The excuses didn’t work (and the whole endangering-kids thing didn’t help, either): In 2006, Etienne was sentenced to more than 150 years in prison, although in 2013 it was reduced to a mere 105 years behind bars, the lucky duck. He reportedly spends most of his time these days not boxing, but painting. One of his pieces even hangs in a New Orleans police precinct, which is only slightly less bewildering than the police chief who nagged Charles Manson jamming to his music while clacking away at paperwork.