Despite a history of repeated criminal offenses which included assault, battery, grand larceny, and four counts of statutory rape. John ended up becoming an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., with his past records clandestinely expunged.
After receiving certain injuries in his line of duty, John was provided with a steel plate in his head that could house a recorder, as well as a cybernetic left hand. With fellow agent Arthur Perry, John was sent to San Concepcion to investigate the assassination on the nations president. The assassin unfortunately turned out to be Elektra, and after being confronted by the two agents left them to die in an explosion.
Recovered by S.H.I.E.L.D. and upgraded to a cybernetic body by ExTechOp. John swore revenge against Elektra. He discovered her next mission to stop The Hand from gaining a presidential foothold over the world with candidate Ken Wind, who'd been possessed by the Hand's Beast, and so he allied himself with her for the sake of the world.