Mike Tyson : biography
In March 2011, Tyson appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show to discuss his new Animal Planet reality series, Taking on Tyson. In the interview with DeGeneres, Tyson discussed some of the ways he had improved his life in the past two years, including sober living and a vegan diet.
Mike Tyson dropped out of high school as a junior and never graduated. In 1989, along with Don King, he was awarded an honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from Central State University, in Wilberforce, Ohio by university President Arthur E. Thomas.
At the height of his fame and career in the late 1980s and throughout the 1990s, Tyson was one of the most recognized sports personalities in the world. Apart from his many sporting accomplishments, his outrageous and controversial behavior in the ring and in his private life has kept him in the public eye and in the courtroom., ESPN25.com. Retrieved April 1, 2007. As such, Tyson has appeared in myriad popular media in cameo appearances in film and television. He has also been featured in video games and as a subject of parody or satire.
The film Tyson was released in 1995 and was directed by Uli Edel. It explores the life of Mike Tyson, from the death of his guardian and trainer Cus D’Amato to his rape conviction. Tyson is played by Michael Jai White.
Published in 2007, author Joe Layden’s book The Last Great Fight: The Extraordinary Tale of Two Men and How One Fight Changed Their Lives Forever, chronicled the lives of Tyson and Douglas before and after their heavyweight championship fight. The book received positive reviews and claimed the fight was essentially the beginning of the end of boxing’s popularity in mainstream sports.
In 2008, the critically acclaimed documentary Tyson premiered at the annual Cannes Film Festival in France. The film was directed by James Toback and has interviews with Tyson and clips of his fights and from his personal life.
The Felice Brothers, a folk-rock band from Upstate New York, released a song on their 2011 album Celebration, Florida titled "Cus’s Catskill Gym." The song tells the story, albeit briefly, of Mike Tyson and a few notable characters and moments in his life.
Rape conviction, prison, and conversion
Tyson was arrested in July 1991 for the rape of 18-year-old Desiree Washington, Miss Black Rhode Island, in an Indianapolis hotel room. Tyson’s rape trial took place in the Indianapolis courthouse from January 26 to February 10, 1992.
Desiree Washington testified that she received a phone call from Tyson at 1:36 am on July 19, 1991 inviting her to a party. Having joined Tyson in his limousine, Washington testified that Tyson made sexual advances towards her. She testified that upon arriving at his hotel room, Tyson pinned her down on his bed and raped her despite her pleas to stop. She ran out of the room and asked Tyson’s chauffeur to drive her back to her hotel. Partial corroboration of Washington’s story came via testimony from Tyson’s chauffeur, Virginia Foster, who confirmed Desiree Washington’s state of shock. Further testimony came from Thomas Richardson, the emergency room physician who examined Washington more than 24 hours after the incident and confirmed that Washington’s physical condition was consistent with rape.
Under lead defense lawyer Vincent Fuller’s direct examination, Tyson claimed that everything had taken place with Washington’s full cooperation and he claimed not to have forced himself upon her. When he was cross-examined by lead prosecutor Gregory Garrison, Tyson denied claims that he had misled Washington and insisted that she wanted to have sex with him. Because of Tyson’s hostile and defensive responses to the questions during cross-examination, some have speculated that his behavior made him unlikable to the jury who saw him as brutish and arrogant.Great American Trials; The Mike Tyson Trial, 1992; ISBN 1-57859-199-6; Copyright 1994; New England Publishing Associates Inc. Tyson was convicted on the rape charge on February 10, 1992 after the jury deliberated for nearly 10 hours.Muscatine, Alison., , The Washington Post via MIT-The Tech, February 11, 1992. Retrieved March 11, 2007.