According to TMZ, 36-year-old Melvin Townsend III was previously convicted of “fraud, grand theft, burglary, drug possession of controlled substances, and trafficking of stolen property.”
In 2018, Townsend broke into a house and stole a trailer, which he hitched to his pickup. He was charged, in a separate case, with possessing oxycodone. Apparently, he did prison time twice, once for 20 months and another for 15 months.
As previously reported, Tyson allegedly punched a drunken Townsend during a JetBlue flight from San Francisco International Airport to Florida.
Video footage obtained by TMZ showed the man incessantly taunting and harassing the 55-year-old former heavyweight boxing champion. Eventually, Tyson shut him up with a few punches, making him bleed to prove his point.
The video has since been circulating on social, causing the punchee to become somewhat of a celebrity.
Don’t annoy Mike Tyson 💪pic.twitter.com/mkV3UHpkUH
— Vicious Videos (@ViciousVideos) April 23, 2022
Since being identified, fans have shown support for Tyson, claiming Townsend’s criminal record and reckless harassment do not make him a victim.
The JetBlue passenger punched by Mike Tyson is an example of a generation of people who think they can harass, behave and do whatever they want without consequences.
Psst … F**k with the Bull you get the Horns.
I Stand with @MikeTyson
— Charlie DiLorenzo (@C__DiLorenzo) April 23, 2022
I stand with Iron Mike Tyson, you? That inebriated asshat was acting a fool, leaning over Tyson’s seat, harassing him, flicking his ear, talking trash and then tossed a water bottle at him. He’s lucky he’s not in the hospital, to be honest.
— LivePDDave 🇺🇸 🚨 🥊 (@LivePDDave1) April 23, 2022
While I don’t condone violence, I think our society has enabled people to mouth off, harrass and get away with it thinking they can just make money off of a lawsuit if it turns physical. I stand with #miketyson
— Rikki Rockett (@RikkiRockett) April 21, 2022
Police have reported the situation, but no charges have been made yet.