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Car Accident Enrages Mike Tyson

September 1, 1998 GMT

GAITHERSBURG, Md. (AP) _ Add road rage to the list of Mike Tyson’s problems.

The former heavyweight champion and his wife, Monica Turner, were involved in a minor auto accident in this Maryland suburb near Washington on Monday, and police said Tyson had to be restrained by his own bodyguards from fighting the driver of the other car.

Tyson was a passenger in the Mercedes convertible driven by Turner, who apparently struck the car in front of her, said Derek Baliles, a spokesman for the Montgomery County police.

Tyson got out of the car and ``appeared to want to fight the other driver,″ Baliles said. ``He was restrained by his wife and members of his security detail who were traveling in a second car.″

The other driver was not identified.

Because passersby called to report the incident, police stopped Tyson a short time later, he said.

``Because of the reports of a fight, we wanted to be sure everyone was OK,″ Baliles said. ``While we were speaking to Mr. Tyson, he requested an ambulance, complaining of chest pains.″

Once the ambulance arrived, Tyson refused to be taken to a hospital, saying his wife was a doctor and would tend to him, Baliles said. The group was then allowed to leave, but a short time later, they drove to Shady Grove Adventist Hospital, where Tyson was treated and released after about two hours, according to hospital spokesman Robert Jepson.

``The nature of his injuries do not appear to be serious,″ Jepson said, declining to give further details.

Police said they have recorded the day’s events. ``We are writing it up as a misdemeanor assault,″ Baliles said. ``In the state of Maryland, if a misdemeanor occurs and it’s not in the presence of a police officer, we can’t place charges or place anyone under arrest.″

It is up to the other driver to decide whether to make a complaint to police, and it was unclear if he wanted to pursue the matter, Baliles said, adding that the man has up to a year to do so.

``I hope he will seriously consider his options,″ Baliles said. ``If he really feels he was assaulted, he needs to file charges.″

A telephone call to the New York office of Tyson adviser Shelly Finkel was not returned Monday night.

Tyson is scheduled to appear Sept. 19 at a hearing before the Nevada Athletic Commission to determine if the state will let him box again.

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Tyson was banned by the commission in July 1997 after biting Evander Holyfield’s ears during their heavyweight championship fight. His license was revoked and he was fined $3 million.

He was eligible to reapply for a license in Nevada on July 9, but bypassed the state and went through the licensing process in New Jersey. On the eve of that licensing decision, he abruptly withdrew the application in New Jersey and said he would seek licensing in Nevada.