In an episode of Vivica A. Fox’s podcast, Hustling With Vivica A. Fox, TV-personality Claudia Jordan,47, opened up about the 1991 rape trial against the former boxer, Mike Tyson. At the time, Jordan and the victim, 18-year-old Desiree Washington, were friends.
That year, Washington was in Indianapolis to compete for the Miss Black USA pageant, as she was the titleholder of Miss Black Rhode Island that year.
At the time, Washington told Jordan that because she did not feel pretty, she was considering leaving the state. Jordan was able to convince Washington to stay, but the following day, she was raped.
During the interview with Fox, Jordan explained the moment, saying, “I talked her into staying, the next day she went out, and she got raped. I felt very bad about that for a very long time.”
While driving to Indianapolis with Washington’s family to surprise her at the Miss Black USA pageant, Jordan learned of Washington’s sexual assault.
“As soon as she got on the phone, she was like, ‘I went out with Mike Tyson last night, and he raped me,'” Jordan recounted. “I put mom on the phone; she’s hysterical. Her father cries, his heart is broken. It was so sad. I had to be the sensible one, I got on the phone, like, ‘Okay, have you taken a shower? We gotta come pick you up.’ We picked her up, we took her to the hospital, and I could tell, as soon as I saw her, that she was broken.”
Jordan then went to the hospital with Washington and stayed with her as she went through the examination process.
“I took her, I held her hand while she was having her vaginal examination.”
She added, “They said there was evidence.”
During the trial in 1992, Jordan was called to the witness stand as a witness for the defense.
“It was horrible for me,” she said. “[Tyson] was like 10 feet away, he was mad. I think he thought I was called by the defense like all the other paid off witnesses that came to the trial in new clothes and fresh from a trip from Jamaica. But when I got on the stand, I’m a hostile witness for their side.”
She continued, “You hate to see a Black man who came from nothing be … I can’t even say taken down; he took himself down. There’s evidence, he got on the stand, and he said, ‘I know I did something wrong, but I didn’t break no bones, so what’s the big deal.'”
Although Tyson denied raping Washington, the court sentenced him to 6 years at the Indiana Youth Center. After serving three years, he was released and placed on parole.
As for her friend, Jordan notes that Washington’s life was ruined after the tragic incident and the events that followed. She also mentioned that Washington has not once attempted to profit off of the tragedy by writing a tell-all book or by creating a documentary.
“I think she should do one. Her whole family fell apart after this,” said Jordan. “So much stuff happened. She had to change her name and move, cut her hair, she changed how she looks so no one would f-ck with her. Her life was ruined, her life was ruined in one night.”