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By Mike Johnson on 2018-01-24 10:32:00

Since World Wrestling Entertainment announced yesterday that Enzo Amore was being released from the company in the wake of claims from a woman in Arizona that Amore had allegedly raped her in October 2017, we've received a number of emails asking if the firing was due to an internal belief within WWE that Amore was guilty of the accusations.  That is not the case.

WWE's standard protocol in these situations (as seen in the recent Rich Swann suspension) is to suspend a talent indefinitely when they have been arrested and then, if the charges are dropped, bring them back.  If the talent is convicted, they are immediately terminated.  Amore has not been charged with anything by the Phoenix Police Department and in checking with them yesterday and today, there have been no developments in their investigation that mean an arrest is pending. 

In speaking to a number of WWE sources last night and this morning, we are told that WWE management was completely unaware of the allegations and the criminal investigation into the October 2017 Phoenix incident until members of the media reached out Monday afternoon after it broke on Twitter.  The company was in the middle of putting together Raw 25 plans and had already locked their plans in, including Goldust vs. Enzo in hour three from Brooklyn. 

When the company learned of the allegations on Twitter, we are told that Amore was approached and asked about them.   According to numerous sources, while Amore denied the allegations were true, he acknowledged that he knew about the investigation.  From WWE's perspective, we are told by sources, the fact that Amore had been aware of the criminal investigation, yet failed to inform WWE management about, led to his immediate suspension and expulsion from the Barclays Center. 

[Note from Mike: After posting this story, we were made aware that the website initially broke yesterday that Enzo had not made WWE aware of the situation.]

With WWE being a publicly traded company that promotes primarily to families and children, we are told that management was angry that Amore, who they had built the entire 205 Live brand around in recent months, had knowingly put them into a position where, on a major media day, they had to react to inquiries over one of their champions involved in what could only be described as horrible, heinous accusations.  One source noted that the only way the timing could have been worse would been for WWE to have been blindsided by this on Wrestlemania weekend.

The decision to terminate Amore the next day was again, not a belief internally that Amore was guilty, but a determination that Amore failing to inform the company was, as several people described it, "the last straw" for Amore within the company. 

It isn't news that Amore had been an controversial figure behind the scenes, something that was openly talked about in his recent WWE Network interview with Corey Graves.  Sources indicated that there had been a number of issues previously with Amore's behind the scenes conduct, including the company being unhappy that he had gone on social media to mock Big Cass' legitimate injury when he hadn't been instructed to do so last year as well as the well-known situation in Europe where he was thrown off a tour bus for, allegedly, being loud and not letting talents sleep in the middle of the night even after he was asked repeatedly to quiet down.  Within the company, among the wrestlers, Amore had been one of the least liked members of the locker room, often dressing and traveling on his own. 

In the end, WWE sources tell us, there were too many instances of problems in recent months that were already building against Amore.  His decision to not come to the company about criminal allegations that are obviously extremely serious and horrible, while knowing about them for months, was the watershed moment that led to them finally terminating him.

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