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Tyson Divorces Givens In Dominican Republic

February 15, 1989

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic (AP) _ Heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson got a Valentine’s Day divorce from his former sweetheart, actress Robin Givens.

Tyson, accompanied by boxing promoter Don King, was cheered by passengers on his flight from Miami and in the airport terminal, 17 miles from Santo Domingo. He waved his arm in a victory sign.

Ninety minutes after his arrival Tuesday, the 22-year-old boxer and his lawyers appeared before Judge Ricardo Gomez at the capital’s Civil and Commercial Court, where he signed papers making the divorce final.

A law in this Caribbean nation allows for divorce between foreigners to be carried out in the presence of only one of the parties, provided an official document ratified by lawyers of the other person also is presented.

Neal Hersh, an attorney for Ms. Givens, said the 24-year-old actress signed settlement documents last week.

″Mike went to the Dominican Republic because Robin was unavailable due to her acting commitments in Los Angeles,″ Hersh said in Los Angeles.

Ms. Givens’ New York attorney, Raoul Felder, has said Ms. Givens would keep her possessions, and Tyson ″will keep what is his.″

Tyson and Ms. Givens were married Feb. 7, 1988, in Chicago after the National Basketball Association All-Star game, which Tyson attended, and then remarried two days later in New York because they didn’t have an Illinois license.

Tyson and his lawyers met with Gomez in the judge’s office to sign the divorce papers. The court had closed four hours earlier, and when Tyson arrived the judge, janitors and a few secretaries were the only people present.

During an interview with Barbara Walters on ABC’s ″20-20″ last October, Ms. Givens said Tyson has an ″extremely volatile temper″ and that she was afraid of him.

A few days after the interview, police in New Jersey went into the couple’s Bernardsville mansion to try to calm Tyson at the request of Ms. Givens and her mother, Ruth Roper, because the champion reportedly had angrily hurled furniture through windows.

Tyson will defend his heavyweight crown in Las Vegas on Feb. 25 against Frank Bruno of Great Britain.

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