Mayweather gets suspended sentence

Updated: June 12, 2004, 5:09 PM ET
Associated Press

LAS VEGAS -- Lightweight boxing champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. has been convicted of two counts of misdemeanor battery stemming from a fight with two women inside a Las Vegas nightclub.

Mayweather was given a suspended sentence of one-year in jail and ordered to undergo counseling. Justice of the Peace Deborah Lippis said Thursday that if Mayweather didn't complete "impulse control" counseling and stay out of trouble for a year, he would spend a year in prison.

She also ordered the boxer to either pay a $1,000 fine or serve 100 hours of community service.

Lippis appeared to be angered by Mayweather's failure to take responsibility, saying if he didn't change his attitude she'd put him in prison in a "New York minute."

"You may be a terrific and famous fighter, but that doesn't make you a god," Lippis said.

During the trial, Mayweather testified he never saw the two women, who accused him of punching them in an unprovoked attack.

Herneatha McGill and Kaara Blackburn said they were in the club Ra at the Luxor hotel-casino in the early morning hours of Aug. 1 when Mayweather and several bodyguards walked in.

McGill, who is friends with the mother of three of Mayweather's children, said she had a prior run-in with Mayweather and wanted to leave the nightclub. She did not elaborate on the earlier incident.

The women said Mayweather approached them as they started to walk away.

"We started to walk out real fast, but it was too late," Blackburn said. "I saw him hit her."

The women testified Mayweather punched McGill on the cheek, and then punched Blackburn on the back of the head as she tried to help her friend off the ground.

After the incident, security guards convinced the women not to report the incident to police, saying they would "end up paying for it in the streets," McGill said.

After a couple of weeks, the women changed their minds and filed reports with Las Vegas police and hotel security.

Neither woman sought medical attention, and they both contacted a civil lawyer.

One of Mayweather's lawyers, Richard Wright, suggested the women were using the criminal charges to get money from his client. He said he found it hard to believe that neither woman had bruises and neither needed medical attention.

"I don't want to sue Mr. Mayweather," McGill said. "I just want Mr. Mayweather to leave me alone."

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press