Desiree Washington: What Exactly Is Her Story?

Desiree Washington
Mike -- "Desiree" - Episode 105 -- An 18 year old honor student from a small town in Rhode Island named Desiree Washington accuses Mike of rape. Desiree Washington (Li Eubanks), shown. (Photo by: Alfonso Bresciani/Hulu)

A lot of people might be curious about the story of Desiree Washington. She is after all Miss Black Rhode Island 1991. Thus since then, she has gained enormous recognition from countless fans across the nation. Gradually she became a household name.

However, Desiree Washington is mainly known for a different reason. You see, Desiree Washington is the one who accused the world heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson of raping her. Yes, you heard it right. Mike Tyson is a global celebrity. Therefore, the revelation was shocking, to say the least.

Rape is an immensely significant offense to reckon with. Hence it garnered a lot of attention back then. If you are curious to know more, then you are in the right place. Continue exploring to know the story of Desiree Washington.

Where did Desiree Washington confess?

You must wonder where Desiree Washington spoke about this incident. Well, she spoke about the incident in ABC’s Mike Tyson: Knockout Documentary. There is no looking back since then. Hence her name is in the news constantly after that.

A Background of Desiree Washington

Desiree Washington was a beauty queen. Back in the year 1991, she represented her home state Rhode Island in the Miss Black America Pageant. She even went on to gain recognition in that event. Thus her journey toward the limelight begins since then.

The rape incident 

Unfortunately, this rape happened in the same pageant. As per reports, Tyson invited Desiree to her room. This took place at the Canterbury Hotel. There on the 19th of July, 1991 Tyson raped her.

What happened after that?

After the rape took place Desiree Washington directly went to the hospital. There she took refuge in the emergency room and told her physician everything. Thus from that moment, everything changed in her life.

Media coverage

The entire media covered the story back then. Even reputed newspapers like The Los Angeles Times came to her defense. The report in the Los Angeles Times talked about her Desiree was a helpless victim in this case. But she indeed was brave. Thus we find that she tried to punch Tyson in her defense.

Any corroboration?

You might be wondering whether there is any corroboration to her story or not. Well, actually there is. We see that Tyson’s chauffeur, Virginia Foster, corroborated her testimony in this case.

A state of trauma

Desiree Washington genuinely faced trauma after this incident. Her entire life changed. Hence this incident impacted her mental health immensely.

Physician confirmation

After all the formalities the physician confirmed that it was indeed rape. Thus after that, the course of further action took place.

Tyson’s version of the story

Every story has two sides. Hence you should also know the version of Mike Tyson as well. Thus let us find out. You see, Tyson is of the view that everything happened consensually. There was no rape according to her. Both of them indulged in mutual sexual union.

What was the final verdict?

Mike Tyson was found guilty of the crime. Thus e was sentenced to imprisonment for six years. However, he had to serve less than three years of the sentence. He came out on parole due to good behavior.

Desiree Washington
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DESIREE WASHINGTON; (Tyson’s rape victim) with Barbara Walters for an interview on ABC’s “20/20” programme.
Rape victim Desiree Washington said she pities her attacker, boxer Mike Tyson, and would have dropped charges if he had sought help.
“I pitied him, from the day I pressed charges. This man needs help.”
The beauty queen claimed she was offered a million dollars to drop the charges against him. But in a television interview with presenter Barabar Walters, she said she would have been content with a simple apology.


  • Where is Desiree Washington now?

After this traumatic incident, Desiree Washington completely stays out of the limelight.

  • Did Desiree Washington face any problems after the trial of Tyson?

Yes, Desiree Washington had to face severe backlash from many of Tyson’s fans.