BJ Penn arrested, under investigation for driving under the influence

A UFC Hall of Famer is in trouble with the law once again.

Former UFC two-division champion BJ Penn was arrested for allegedly driving under the influence Saturday in Honokaa, Hawaii, Hawaii Police Department spokesperson Denise Laitinen told ESPN on Monday. Penn was released pending an investigation, Laitinen said.

A request for comment from Penn family representative Gary Levitt was not immediately returned.

Officers from the Hawaii Police Department responded to a report of a reckless driver on a business property in Honokaa at about 4:51 p.m. Saturday, according to a release from the department. Witnesses told police that Penn, 42, was at the business earlier and was "observed talking loudly towards employees and later drove off the property in a reckless manner."

According to the release, Penn returned to the business while officers were still at the scene. The officers contacted Penn, observed signs of impairment and arrested him for operating a vehicle under the influence of intoxicants.

The Hawaii Police Department, which covers the island of Hawaii (better known as The Big Island), launched a DUI investigation into Penn last February for a separate incident. Reports came in to police at the time that Penn was speeding in a black truck, lost control and flipped the vehicle. Penn's team denied the truck flipped over, and Penn was never charged.

The UFC released Penn in September 2019 after videos surfaced online of him getting into a bar fight. Penn was supposed to fight Nik Lentz in a grudge match late in 2019, but UFC president Dana White scrapped those plans after the clips were published.

"He won't fight again, that's it," White told ESPN in September 2019. "That's a wrap. It's not even that this was the last straw. I didn't love him continuing to fight anyway. But with the relationship that he and I have -- he gets me on the phone, begging me for another fight; it's hard to turn him down -- after what I saw in that video, BJ needs to, you know, he needs to focus on his personal life before he thinks about fighting."

Penn (16-14-2) has long been a fan favorite in MMA. The Hawaii native was only the second man to win two UFC titles in two different weight classes, after Randy Couture. Penn remains tied for the most consecutive UFC lightweight title defenses (three) with Khabib Nurmagomedov and Benson Henderson.

Clay Guida beat Penn in Penn's most recent fight at UFC 237 in May 2019. Penn is on a seven-fight losing streak, the longest such streak in UFC history. He lost four straight after coming out of retirement in 2017.