Charles “Mask” Lewis, the founder of clothing line and MMA gear provider TapouT was killed last night in a car crash in Costa Mesa, California.
Mask is best known as one of the biggest personalities in the Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) community, with TapouT being both a sponsor and gear provider. Mask also was a star in the Versus reality TV show “Tapout.”
Mask was killed while street racing his Ferrari against a Porsche. A female occupant of the Ferrari was thrown clear of the wreck, and is currently in a stable condition. Jeffrey David Kirby, the driver of the Porsche was arrested and charged with gross vehicular manslaughter and is being held on $1 million bail. Footage from the scene shows virtually nothing left of the Ferrari, only a small part of the rear of the vehicle. That anyone survived the crash in itself is a miracle.
Mask was one of the three founding members of the “TapouT Crew,” The brand launched in 1997 with the three selling t-shirts out of their cars at grassroots MMA events. The brand grew to be a multi-million dollar enterprise. Mask also trained with many MMA athletes, and his alter-ego was a fan favorite at events alongside his coverts “Skyscrape” and “Punkass.” The “TapouT” name has become synonymous with MMA.