Ex–Boxing Champ Gatti Found Dead in Brazil

By Newser Editors and Wire Services

Posted Jul 11, 2009 6:48 PM CDT

(Newser) – Former boxing champion Arturo Gatti, whose epic trilogy with Micky Ward branded him one of the most exciting fighters of his generation, was found dead in a hotel room in the posh seaside resort of Porto de Galihnas today. Police investigator Edilson Alves says the body of the former junior welterweight champ was discovered in his room at the tourist resort, where Gatti had arrived yesterday with his Brazilian wife Amanda and 1-year-old son.

Alves said police were investigating and it was unclear how the 37-year-old Canadian died. "There were no bullet or stab wounds on his body, but police did find blood stains on the floor," a state spokeswoman said. Brazilian boxer Acelino "Popo" Freitas said that he was a close friend of Gatti and his wife, and that he "knew they were having some sort of problem and were about to separate." Gatti's wife and son were unhurt.

Arturo Gatti hugs his wife Vivian after his Junior Welterweight bout against Micky Ward at Boardwalk Hall on June 7, 2003 in Atlantic City, New Jersey.   (Getty Images)
Arturo Gatti weighs in at 146 pounds in Atlantic City, N.J., on Friday, July 13, 2007, for his Saturday welterweight title boxing match against Alfonso Gomez.   (AP Photo/Sharon Stabley)
Boxer Arturo Gatti weighs in at 146-pounds at Caesars Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, N.J., Friday, July 13, 2007.   (AP Photo/Sharon Stabley)
Welterweight Arturo Gatti, right, from Jersey City, N.J., and his trainer Micky Ward attend a New York news conference Tuesday May 22, 2007.   (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
In this July 11, 2007 file photo, Arturo Gatti poses for photographs during a news conference in New York.   (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, File)
In this Jan. 24, 2004 file photo, Arturo Gatti celebrates after defeating Gianluca Branco of Italy for the WBC junior welterweight championship in Atlantic City, N.J.   (AP Photo/Mary Godleski)
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