Sports Digest: No charges against Mike Tyson for punching airplane passenger

BOXING

MIKE TYSON: Authorities will not file criminal charges against former heavyweight champ Mike Tyson after he was recorded on video punching a fellow first-class passenger aboard a plane at San Francisco International Airport last month, prosecutors announced Tuesday.

The San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office said it has closed the case and decided against pursuing charges based on “the circumstances surrounding the confrontation.”

“These include the conduct of the victim leading up to the incident, the interaction between Mr. Tyson and the victim, as well as the requests of both the victim and Mr. Tyson that no charges be filed in this case,” District Attorney Stephen Wagstaffe said in a statement.

Police previously said that the victim had provided few details about the altercation and refused to cooperate with the investigation. Representatives for Tyson previously said the boxer was on a flight with “an aggressive passenger who began harassing him and threw a water bottle at him while he was in his seat.”

The April 20 video shows Tyson leaning over the back of his seat repeatedly striking the unidentified man in the head, drawing blood. The footage was first shared by TMZ, which said it was recorded on a Jet Blue plane bound for Florida. Prior to the physical altercation, the other passenger was seen on the video standing over Tyson’s seat – waving his arms and talking animatedly while the former boxer sits quietly.

TENNIS

FRENCH OPEN: Veteran French players Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Gilles Simon have been handed wild cards to play in the main draw at the French Open, organizers said Tuesday.

A former Australian Open runner-up, Tsonga announced earlier this season that he will retire after the clay-court Grand Slam event. Play begins at Roland Garros on May 22. Simon said he is retiring at the end of the season after 20 years of playing professional tennis.

Tsonga and Simon are both 37 years old and helped France win the Davis Cup in 2017.

ITALIAN OPEN: Still attempting to get his nearly unbeatable form back following his time away from the tour, Novak Djokovic took another step in the right direction with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Aslan Karatsev in his opening match at the Italian Open on Tuesday.

The top-ranked Djokovic, who is bidding for a sixth Rome title, showed off some vintage scrambling abilities late in the first set when he ran down one shot near the net post then sprinted back across the net to dig out a low backhand volley winner.

John Isner eliminated Miami Open semifinalist Francisco Cerundolo 6-4, 6-3 and will next face 10-time Rome champion Rafael Nadal. Diego Schwartzman, a finalist in Rome two years ago, saved two match points before eliminating Miomir Kecmanovic 6-2, 3-6, 7-6 (3). Grigor Dimitrov beat American qualifier Brandon Nakashima 6-3, 6-4 and will face fourth-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas.

Also, Madrid Open runner-up Jessica Pegula rallied past Liudmila Samsonova 4-6, 6-3, 6-4. American qualifiers Madison Brengle and Lauren Davis both advanced in straight sets. Brengle beat fellow qualifier Marta Kostyuk 6-4, 6-3 and Davis defeated 2017 French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko 6-2, 6-3.

Amanda Anisimova, another American and a French Open semifinalist in 2019, held off Czech qualifier Tereza Martincova 6-2, 0-6, 6-4 and will next play Olympic gold medalist Belinda Bencic.

CYCLING

TOUR OF ITALY: German cyclist Lennard Kämna won the fourth stage of the Giro d’Italia on the slopes of Mount Etna while Juan Pedro López moved into the overall lead on Tuesday as the Italian grand tour returned to home soil.

Kämna, who rides for Bora-Hansgrohe, had time to raise his arms over his head as he crossed the line just ahead of López, who banged his handlebars in frustration. It was a second grand tour stage win for the 25-year-old Kämna, who won a stage on the Tour de France two years ago.


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