UFC president, other sports stars write letters to support Cain Velasquez in SJ shooting case

SANTA CLARA COUNTY, Calif. (KGO) -- A judge has denied bail for former UFC Champion Cain Velasquez after he was arrested in a shooting that happened last week in San Jose.

The judge said that there is clear and convincing evidence that Velasquez remains a threat to public safety.

Velasquez reportedly shot into a car, aiming for a man accused of molesting a 4-year-old relative, but hit someone else, according to court documents.

The man, who was in the car with two others at the time, was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries after the shooting near Monterey Road and Bailey Avenue.

According to the court documents, the target of the shooting - 43-year-old Harry Goularte - is facing felony charges for reportedly molesting a child who is a close relative of Velasquez. He was unharmed in the shooting, authorities say.

"If you believe what the DA says the motivation is, is there anybody out there who would say to a father that this is not what you should do?" Velasquez' Attorney Mark Geragos said.

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Court documents say former UFC Champion Cain Velasquez attempted to murder a man recently arrested for allegedly molesting a close relative of his.



Prosecutor Aaron French read a letter to the court today written by Goularte's mother that said Velasquez being out on bail would put them at risk.

Goularte was arraigned in Santa Clara County Superior Court on Feb. 25. He was released under the conditions that he stay on house arrest in Morgan Hill, stay 100 yards away from any child under 14, and wear an electronic monitoring bracelet. He was on his way to get the monitor when Velasquez attempted to shoot him during an 11-mile high-speed chase, according to authorities.

Goularte's stepfather, 63, was struck once in the driver's seat, but is expected to survive.

Goularte's mother operates a home daycare center that Velasquez has been a client of for two years, where the molestation allegedly took place.

Goularte didn't work the daycare, but he lived inside the home.

"After deputies interviewed the 4-year-old child and other parties involved at this daycare, they later determined that a sexual assault occurred," Santa Clara County Sheriff's Deputy Russell Davis told ABC7 News.



Celebrity-lawyer Mark Geragos said there is no threat of Velasquez running or quote "finishing the job" if a substantial bail was approved.

He presented the judge with 37 letters of support for the UFC star - including some written by prominent sports figures like UFC President Dana White and UFC World Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov who trains with Velasquez at AKA in San Jose.

Other notable letters written came from UFC Fighters Yair Ramirez, Fabricio Werdum, Kelvin Gastelum, Henry Cejudo, Kamaru Usman, Islam Makhavhev, WWE Superstar Rey Misterio, Bellator Founder Bjorn Rebney, Bellator CEO Scott Coker, Arizona State University Former Athletic Director Don Bocchi and Wrestling Coach Tom Ortiz and Zappos entrepreneur Nick Swinmurn to name a few.

Geragos fought to get Velasquez back home with his two children, but bail was denied.

"They released the perpetrator back into the public with zero dollar bail, yet they're holding Cain on no bail," Geragos said. "This is why people are disgusted, and rightfully so, with the criminal justice system."

RELATED: Former UFC champ Cain Velasquez arrested suspicion of attempted murder after SJ shooting, police say

Former San Francisco Assistant District Attorney and Police Commissioner Jim Hammer says Velasquez being denied bail shouldn't come as a shock.

He believes the defense will try and focus the attention on the the molestation case to reduce the heat on Velasquez and avoid a trial.

"If he goes to trial and is convicted on attempted premeditated murder, the penalty is life in prison," Hammer said. "The stakes are incredibly high and the defense in this case has had their eyes on both: how you change public opinion, or at least soften it, make him somewhat more sympathetic, but also how to prepare for a potential trial down the road."

Geragos said there may be up to 20 other victims of sexual assault at the daycare center that Goularte was at.

He is asking anyone impacted to reach out to police.

"We believe this is widespread. We believe that not only one person is involved, but there is potentially a cover-up in aiding and abetting that this is a broader conspiracy as to what is going on there," Geragos said.

Velasquez's next court appearance is set for April 12. He is being held on attempted, premeditated murder, and other related charges.

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