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Former boxer Tyson arrested on DUI, cocaine charges

SCOTTSDALE, Arizona (Reuters) - Former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson was arrested in Arizona on Friday and charged with driving under the influence of drugs and possession of cocaine, police said.

Boxer Mike Tyson is shown in these booking mug shots taken in the early hours of December 29, 2006. REUTERS/Maricopa Sheriff's Dept/Handout

Tyson was arrested in Scottsdale, 10 miles east of Phoenix, Arizona, after his black BMW nearly collided with a sheriff’s vehicle, according to court documents.

“During an interview with Mike he admitted to using today and stated he is an addict and has a problem,” the arresting officer said in court documents. “Mike admitted to possessing bags of cocaine and said he uses any time he can get his hands on it.”

Tyson appeared in court on Friday morning and was freed on supervised release, meaning he has to regularly report to officials for drug and alcohol monitoring, until he appears in court again on January 16, Superior Court of Arizona spokeswoman J.W. Brown said.

“He is not to leave the state of Arizona. He is not to possess any weapons or drugs without a valid prescription. He is not to drink any alcohol. He is not to drive without a valid driver’s license and he is to continue to reside at his present Paradise Valley home,” Brown said.

The 40-year-old boxer known as “Iron Mike” became Heavyweight Champion of the World when he was 21, but was later banned from fighting for a year and fined $2.85 million after he bit off part of an opponent’s ear during a match in 1997.

“(Tyson) was actually very cooperative, very calm, and just acted like a complete gentleman,” Sgt. Larry Hall, spokesman for the Buckeye Police Department told Reuters when asked about Tyson’s arrest.

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Tyson was arrested by a police officer from Buckeye, 35 miles west of Phoenix, who had been working in Scottsdale on a DUI task force, Hall said.

Tyson, who has a long history of legal troubles, was convicted in 1992 for the rape of a beauty pageant queen in an Indianapolis hotel room.

He was sentenced to six years in prison and released in 1995 after serving three years.

Tyson retired from boxing last year after losing to journeyman Kevin McBride in Washington, D.C. A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Tyson left the ring with a 50-6 record with 44 knockouts.

Additional reporting by Michelle Nichols