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Report says Tyson threatened suicide

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NEW YORK -- Heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson, injured when his car slammed into a tree during the weekend, threatened to kill himself just before the crash, a published report said Wednesday.

The New York Daily News reported Tyson, 22, completed a workout Sunday morning in Catskill, N.Y., then called his wife, actress Robin Givens, at her Manhattan apartment.

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'I'm going to go out and kill myself,' Tyson said, according to the News. 'I'm going to crash my car.'

According to the Daily News, Tyson aimed his car at the tree. The paper reported Tyson and Givens had been fighting for weeks. Individuals close to the couple told the paper that last Thursday Tyson threatened to kill his wife.

'I'll kill you and then me,' Tyson reportedly told Givens.

Dr. Dennis Reisen, a New York cardiologist who treated Tyson, disputed claims that Tyson attempted suicide.

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'I think it's purely speculative,' he told UPI Radio. 'I've been very close to the family over the last three or four days and this has been totally out ofthe air. There's been no evidence whatsoever of a psychological or psychiatric problem. He's a well-adjusted young man.'

Camille Ewald, Tyson's surrogate mother, termed the Daily News account 'absolutely not true' and said the champion had skidded on a wet surface, as originally reported.

'I was sitting on the porch,' Ewald said when reached by UPI at her home in upstate New York. 'He said he was going to go outside for a while. It was parked on the grassy part of the lawn. He skidded, hit the tree and knocked himself out. The ground was already wet.'

Ewald said she opened the door and hollered for someone to call the ambulance.

Tyson spokesman Howard Rubinstein said he has not read the Daily News story but told UPI, 'From what I'm told it goes well beyond anything I have knowledge about. I found Mike Tyson to be a gentleman and easy to deal with.' A Rubenstein associate said a statement would be forthcoming around noon today.

According to Catskill doctors, it was pouring rain when Tyson left in his BMW. Earlier reports were that he went out to get a Sunday paper. He pulled out quickly, the tires began spinning and his car slammed into a tree.

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He was not wearing a seat belt.

Tyson was unconscious with minor injuries to the head and chest when he was rushed to Catskill Hospital. Dr. Carolyn Britton, a neurologist at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center in Manhattan where Tyson currently is an inpatient, said the boxer regained consciousness during the ambulance ride and has been alert since.

After the crash, Givens and her mother, Ruth Roper, rushed to meet Tyson at Catskill Hospital and used the limousine phone to call aides and the fighter's manager, Bill Cayton.

'Michael just tried to kill himself,' Givens reportedly told them.

According to The Daily News, when Givens entered Tyson's hospital room Sunday, Tyson was sitting up.

'I told you I'd do it,' Tyson reportedly told Givens. 'And as soon as I get out of here, I'll do it again.'

The champ later was moved to Columbia-Greene Medical Center in Catskill, about 20 miles south of Albany, before being transferred to New York.

Britton said Tyson suffered amnesia from the crash near the home where he was raised in Catskill. At first he did not remember the crash at all, but later recalled the car skidding but no memory of the mishap beyond that, the doctor said Tuesday.

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'He had a concussion,' Britton said. 'And, while there is no external cranial injury, he was out longer than most fighters would have had they been in the ring.'

Tyson, who may have been knocked out for as long as 30 minutes from the accident, has postponed his Oct. 22 championship bout with Frank Bruno in England. Britton said Tuesday she has advised the undefeated champion not to train for 30 to 60 days.

It marks the second time the fight with the Englishman has been delayed.

It was originally set for Oct. 8 but was pushed back when Tyson suffered a hairline fracture of the right hand Aug. 23 during a street fight with former opponent Mitch Green outside an all-night Harlem clothing store.

Reison, after 48 hours of observation concluded the champion's heart is medically sound. Doctors thought Tyson may have bruised his heart in the car crash after he tested abnormally.

Tyson is scheduled to be released in the next day or two but will not go to the Soviet Union as planned with Givens, who is to film two shows of her weekly television series, 'Head of the Class.'

A native of Brooklyn, Tyson lives in Bernardsville, N.J., with Givens, but has been training upstate since last week.

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On July 25, he reached an out-of-court settlement with Cayton in a dispute over the manager's cut of Tyson's purses.

On June 27, Tyson knocked out Michael Spinks in 91 seconds to retain his undisputed heavyweight title. In May, he sideswiped a car with his Bentley convertible in lower Manhattan. He then tried to give the car away to police officers at the scene of the accident.

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