Former boxing champion Mike Tyson will not face any charges for repeatedly punching a passenger on a plane last April in the United States, a California prosecutor said. The decision was made based on the circumstances of the accident, “including the victim’s conduct leading up to the incident, the interaction between Mr. Tyson and the victim,” prosecutor Steve Wagstaffe said in a statement sent to AFP.
Tyson, a former heavyweight champion, repeatedly punched a passenger who insisted on speaking to him on a plane about to take off from San Francisco on April 20 en route to Florida. Videos from people aboard the plane show “Iron Mike” leaning over the back of his seat repeatedly punching a man who media outlets have identified as Melvin Townsend, 36.
According to testimonies collected by local media, the man tried to approach the 55-year-old boxer, who was initially friendly, but reacted against the passenger after several provocations. The prosecutor noted that Townsend sustained minor head injuries, but that both he and Tyson asked not to press charges.
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Wagstaffe said he reviewed reports from the San Francisco police and the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office, as well as “several videos from law enforcement and others.” [pasajeros] on the plane”. “This case should not be tried by criminal justice,” Wagstaffe told the Los Angeles Times. “If the parties want to bring a civil action, they can do so regardless of this decision.”
Considered one of the greatest heavyweights of all time, Tyson has also made headlines for personal episodes including biting a chunk out of Evander Holyfield’s ear in a 1997 fight, his cocaine addiction and a conviction for rape in 1992.
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