As Floyd Mayweather Jr. faced off with Manny Pacquiao Saturday night, millions of people worldwide tuned in to watch the highly anticipated bout, while still millions more followed along with the countless play-by-plays (blow-by-blows?) and post-fight analyses.
Mayweather had an audience in 2010, too — albeit a smaller one — when, in a violent incident described in chilling detail in a police report and accompanying testimony, he beat his ex-girlfriend and threatened to pour acid on her. In stark contrast to tonight’s media spectacle, the only people looking on that night were Mayweather’s two young children, who had an up-close view of the violence.
According to Deadspin’s Daniel Roberts, who last summer wrote the most definitive account of Mayweather’s violence outside of the ring, the boxer’s history of violence against women “extends over a dozen years and includes at least seven separate physical assaults on five different women that resulted in arrest or citation, as well as several other instances where the police had to be summoned in response to an actual or perceived threat from Mayweather.”
The incident started early in the morning on Sept. 9, 2010, when Mayweather showed up at his ex-girlfriend Josie Harris’ home – which he owned – and confronted her about dating NBA point guard C.J. Watson. At the time, Mayweather was living with his own (new) girlfriend in a different house.
According to the police report, Mayweather returned to Harris’ residence at around 5:00 a.m. Harris says in her voluntary statement he confronted her about her relationship with Watson, and started punching her in the back of the head. Mayweather reportedly threatened to kill Harris, and said he would “find someone to pour acid on her,” as detailed in this excerpt from the police report:
Harris described the horrifying abuse throughout her statement, recounting how Mayweather “kept punching me in my head — on the top of my head and the back of my head” and tried to “break my arm by twisting it behind my back”:
As the report says, Mayweather’s two young children, Zion and Koraun, both witnessed the beating. Koraun was 10 years old at the time, and issued a voluntary statement to law enforcement as well — one that is as heartbreaking as it is terrifying. In it, he says one of Mayweather’s associates attempted to block him from leaving the property, so he had to jump the fence in order to call for help for his injured mom:
Police say Mayweather fled the scene in his Rolls Royce, and took Harris’ cell phone with him. She was transported to a nearby hospital shortly thereafter to receive treatment for, among other things, a “large contusion to the right side of her face and chin.”
There is no salacious video of Mayweather pummeling Harris, like there is of former Ravens halfback Ray Rice beating his now-wife in an elevator. But despite the lack of video, there is a plethora of written evidence that documents Mayweather’s atrocities and establishes a clear pattern of violence. It’s difficult to separate Mayweather as a boxer from Mayweather as a person once you’ve read it.