Tyson will not be charged in Las Vegas sex assault cases

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The Independent Online

Mike Tyson will not be charged in two cases of alleged sexual assault in Las Vegas, prosecutors said.

"It was simply unclear whether the sexual interaction between each of the two alleged victims and Mr Tyson was consensual or forced," Clark County prosecutors wrote in a letter sent Thursday to the Las Vegas police.

Prosecutors said there was no question that sexual relations occurred between Tyson and the two women, but said there was "no possibility whatsoever" to successfully prosecute Tyson.

"His position, of course, is it's consensual. Their position is, of course, it's not," Clark County District Attorney Stewart Bell told The Associated Press. "It's just not clear. It could have been either. I don't suppose we'll ever really know the truth."

Ten prosecutors reviewed the evidence gathered since police began investigating Tyson in September. They said the police investigation was so thorough that there was nothing more police could have done, or do in the future, that would warrant charges.

"We are grateful that the Clark Country District Attorney's Office conducted an independent review of both cases and did not rely solely on information gathered by the police department," Tyson's lawyer, Darrow K. Soll of Phoenix, said in a statement.

"Our parallel investigation reveals what we believe to be substantial evidence of Mr. Tyson's innocence."

Tyson himself won't comment, spokesman Scott Miranda said.

Police sought arrest warrants from prosecutors for Tyson on multiple counts of sexual assault in each case.

In the first case, police began investigating Tyson in mid–September, after a Las Vegas woman went to a hospital with injuries that she said were suffered when the boxer raped her at his home.

Chief Deputy District Attorney Doug Herndon has said the woman had been in a six–month romantic relationship with Tyson.

Police searched Tyson's home for more than six hours on 26 September and confiscated several boxes of material, including videotapes, sheets and towels.

The second woman went to police on 28 Decemder and reported that she also had been attacked at Tyson's home in November 2000.

In 1992, Tyson was found guilty of rape in Indiana and served three years of a 10–year sentence.

He was cleared of a sexual battery allegation raised by a woman at a Chicago nightclub in 1996 and of an allegation that he raped a woman last year in Big Bear, Calif.

Prosecutors in Las Vegas said they reviewed both of those cases.

Last month, the Nevada Athletic Commission voted to refuse Tyson a licence to challenge heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis on 6 Aprill at the MGM Grand hotel–casino.

Tyson is now searching for a venue that will let him fight. The Washington D.C. Boxing and Wrestling Commission will hold a hearing on 12 March.

Another vote will be held after the hearing that could grant Tyson a licence for a bout against Lewis at the MCI Centre on 8 June.