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March 20, 2020

Pictures of Mike Tyson and His Wife Robin Givens Photographed by Anthony Barboza in 1988

After meeting in March 1986, Robin Givens married boxer Mike Tyson on February 7, 1988. Tyson was then estimated to have US$50 million, and Givens and he did not make a prenuptial agreement. During their marriage, Givens and her mother bought a $4.6 million mansion in the affluent suburb of Bernardsville, New Jersey.

After a miscarriage in May 1988, the marriage began to fall apart. In a joint interview with Tyson on 20/20, Givens told Barbara Walters that life with him was “torture, pure hell, worse than anything I could possibly imagine,” and she went on to describe his volatile temper.

In October 1988, Givens filed for divorce and was granted a temporary restraining order. Her attorney, Marvin Mitchelson, said, “She loves Michael Tyson, but there is continued violence, and she fears for her safety.” Givens alleged spousal abuse, while Tyson alleged alienation and interest in his money, not in him.

The divorce was finalized on Valentine's Day in 1989. Newspapers reported that Givens received a divorce settlement over $10 million from her marriage to Tyson. She later denied the report, stating: “I didn't receive one dime”. She received negative press following her split from Tyson, particularly within the African American community. One article, in particular, described her as ‘the most hated woman in America’.

Tyson later admitted in the book Fire and Fear: The Inside Story of Mike Tyson, that he punched Givens and stated, “that was the best punch I've ever thrown in my entire life.” Tyson also joked about assaulting Givens on Oprah in 2009, which caused laughter in the audience. Winfrey later issued an apology to Givens.

Photographer Anthony Barboza took these pictures of Mike Tyson and his wife Robin Givens for LIFE Magazine at home in Los Angeles, May 1988.


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