(Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)
In a new tribute/report titled "The Man That Was ‘Mask’," Sherdog adds some backstory to the tragic death of TapouT founder Charles Lewis Jr. As it turns out, Lewis was as sober as Jeffrey Kirby was drunk, and the street-racing theory is probably off-base as well. Here’s what we know now:
[Lewis] was on his way home from the gym with his girlfriend Lacey at 1 a.m., the only time he could fit working out into a hectic schedule. Lewis took pride in his deceiving physique, and many questioned if he was really 45 years old, even after officials confirmed it.
That night, Lewis and Lacey had decided to drive by a condominium apartment they had been looking into purchasing over the next few days. It is believed Lewis’ fire-engine red Ferrari occupied the middle lane when Jeffery Kirby and his companion came up along the left side in a white 1977 Porsche. At the scene, black skid marks snake up onto the median’s curb right as the road bends slightly, then drag for 500 or more feet across the three lanes
. They indicate Kirby’s car bounced off the road’s island divider before t-boning into Lewis’ vehicle’s backend, sending the Ferrari into a 180-degree spin. The car traveled backwards before the driver’s side wailed directly into a cement light pole, slicing it into two parts.
It was the first time in a few months that Lewis had had the opportunity to enjoy the luxury ride he’d purchased over a year ago. The car had slept at a friend’s showroom until Lewis had been asked to bring it to a photo shoot that day for Dub magazine
. High speeds didn’t seem unfathomable under the circumstances, though friends said they couldn’t see Lewis engaging in a dangerous street race for superiority. Lewis didn’t know Kirby, nor was Lewis believed to be drinking at the time. Lewis never touched alcohol, as many will attest.
A criminal trial for Kirby is tentatively scheduled for next month.