Former Boxing champ and a paparazzi were both arrested following a fight at Los Angeles International Airport on Wednesday (Nov. 11). Tyson and the photograph each claim the other started the altercation, with Tyson telling police he was hit first and only acted in self defense. “Mike acted in self-defense as a father protecting his child,” said Tyson’s spokeswoman.
From the L.A. Times:
Mike Tyson was defending his wife and 10-month-old child from an aggressive photographer when the former boxer got into an altercation at LAX on Wednesday, his spokeswoman said.
Tyson and the photographer were arrested on suspicion of battery, and police said they were interviewing witnesses to determine what happened.
Tyson, 43, told investigators that the photographer struck him in an apparent attempt to provoke him, according to a police source who asked not to be named because the matter involved an open investigation.
The photographer told investigators that Tyson punched him in the face and tried to take his camera, the source told The Times.
“Mike acted in self-defense as a father protecting his child,” said Tyson’s spokeswoman Tammy Brook.
A fellow paparazzo interviewed by KABC-TV Channel 7 said the photographer regularly photographed celebrities at LAX but said the man would not provoke a physical altercation.
The incident occurred at Terminal 7 in front of numerous witnesses at about 4:30 p.m., according to Los Angeles Airport Police. The photographer suffered a minor cut to his forehead. Witnesses said there was blood on the floor of the terminal.
Both men wanted to press charges of battery against each other, said Sgt. Jim Holcomb of the airport police.
“There’s a lot of different versions to the story,” Holcomb said.
Tyson was initially held in the airport station’s lockup, but he was later transferred to the LAPD’s 77th Street Station, where he was booked and released on his own recognizance at 8:10 p.m.
“He was very cooperative,” said LAPD Lt. Aaron McCraney. “There were no issues.”