Entertainment behind the scenes
It was self-defense, Mike Tyson says
Never one to go down without a fight, Mike Tyson is claiming self-defense in an altercation with a photographer at Los Angeles International Airport that ended with both men being arrested.
The former heavyweight boxing champ said he was attacked by “an overly aggressive paparazzi” and that he “acted in self-defense as a father protecting his child,” Tyson’s rep Tammy Brook said in a statement to celebrity news sites.
Tyson, traveling with his wife Lakiha (pictured at right) and 10-month-old daughter, said the photographer hit him first. Both men are said to have thrown a punch, but photographer Tony Echevarria — not surprisingly — appears to have come off worse and ended up with five stitches on the head .
Echevarria told celebrity web site TMZ.com that Tyson lashed out four times, and called the incident “traumatizing.”
“When you’re being hit by Mike Tyson, it’s really the worst thing in the world that you can imagine,” he said.
No word so far on the extent of any injuries suffered by Tyson.
Tyson isn’t the first celebrity to be unnerved by the paparazzi who hang out at LAX but he may be the first heavyweight champion to have laid one of them low.