Ex boxing champion Johnny Tapia champion found dead.Sport
Five-time world boxing champion Johnny Tapia was found dead in his Albuquerque home Sunday night, aged 45, myfoxny.com reported, citing police sources.
The shocking discovery by a family member marked the end of a troubled life - while reaching great heights in the ring, Tapia had struggled with drugs and depression, made numerous suicide attempts and had repeated run-ins with the law.
Throughout his controversial career, which included a nearly four-year suspension for testing positive to cocaine, Tapia won the WBO and IBF super flyweight titles, was WBA and WBO bantamweight champion and the IBF featherweight champion. He had a career record of 59-5-2.
Albuquerque Police Department spokesman Robert Gibbs said officers were called to Tapia's house about 7:45pm Sunday after a relative found a body there, the Albuquerque Journal reported.
Gibbs said the death did not appear suspicious and that an official cause of death would be determined following an autopsy.
He was raised by his grandparents and battled addiction and depression for most of his life, according to KOB-TV.
Tapia's first known suicide attempt came in 1999 from a drug overdose. He was also hospitalized in critical condition from an apparent cocaine overdose in March, 2007. While he was in the hospital, his brother-in-law and a nephew were killed in a road accident.
Tapia had many arrests for drug possession and was jailed in 2009 for a violation of parole related to cocaine use. He returned to prison in 2010 after failing a drug test.
His last fight was in June last year, when he beat Mauricio Pastrana in an eight-round decision.