CEDAR RAPIDS — Travis Fulton, who competed in more mixed martial arts fights than anyone in history, including many in the Quad-Cities, died in jail one day after he agreed to plead guilty to child pornography charges.
The Linn County Sheriff's office said Fulton, who lived in Parkersburg, Iowa, was found unresponsive in his cell around 4 a.m. Saturday. He was taken to a hospital where he died. Investigators believe the 44-year-old committed suicide.
In February, Fulton was charged in federal court with sexual exploitation of a child, possession of child pornography and receipt of child pornography.
The lawyer representing Fulton had just filed documents in court Friday saying Fulton intended to plead guilty to sexual exploitation of a child and possession of child pornography charges.
Earlier in the week, a judge had rejected Fulton’s efforts to challenge a search warrant that allowed investigators to find images of child pornography on electronic devices Fulton owned.
Fulton was scheduled to appear in court to change his plea later this month.
At the time of his death, Fulton was also facing state charges in Black Hawk County where he was accused of repeatedly punching a woman in the head and threatening to kill her in Waterloo in September 2019.
Fulton, nicknamed “The Ironman,’’ competed in a record 320 MMA bouts, compiling a record of 255-54-10 with one no contest. Long-time promoter Monte Cox said at least 20 of those fights took place at various sites around the Quad-Cities.
Fulton also had a record of 25-48-2 as a professional boxer. According to Boxrec.com, five of those fights were held in Davenport with the most recent one being in 2012.