Why was Cain Velasquez denied bail? Latest details surrounding former UFC champion's attempted murder charge

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Why was Cain Velasquez denied bail? Latest details surrounding former UFC champion's attempted murder charge

With a large swath in the MMA community cheering him on, former UFC champion Cain Velasquez was denied bail at the Santa Clara County Hall of Justice. Velasquez is being charged with attempted murder following a February 28th arrest.

If a $1 million bail was agreed upon, the supposed terms (per MMA Junkie) would also include electronic monitoring. Velasquez would also be required to relocate to an out-of-state inpatient facility, which would require supervision.

Following a high-speed chase through San Jose, Velasquez rammed his Ford F250 into the side of a Silverado carrying Harry Goularte Jr. and his stepfather in February. Velasquez fired a handgun at the vehicle, with several bullets hitting Goularte's stepfather.

He has since been charged with premeditated murder (one count), shooting at a motor vehicle or aircraft (one count), assault with a firearm (three counts), assault with a deadly weapon (three counts), willfully discharging a firearm from a vehicle (one count), and carrying a loaded firearm with intent to commit a felony (one count).

MORE: Cain Velasquez releases first statement since attempted murder charge: 'This story is complex and slowly unraveling'

Goularte was previously charged with molesting a relative of Velasquez’s. Police allege that Goularte touched the child inappropriately multiple times while working at a childcare facility run by Goularte's mother. Goularte lives in the same building as the facility. Goularte was arraigned on February 25 in Santa Clara County Superior Court. The DA's office said that Goularte was scheduled to pick up an electronic monitoring bracelet the day of the shooting.

Judge Shelyna Brown called Velasquez’s actions "reckless" and that pointing out the previous engagements of Goularte was an “improper argument” because she does not have any jurisdiction over Goularte's case.

During the latest hearing, the defense used CTE (Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy) and TBI (traumatic brain injury) to excuse Velasquez's actions. Lawyers argued that years of fighting and shots to the head affected his judgement. Judge Brown acknowledged the possibility of TBI and CTE. It did not, however, change her thoughts on the matter.

“I’ve reviewed all of the letters of community support for Mr. Velasquez and the letters in support of Mr. Goularte,” Brown said, via MMA Junkie.

The court always appreciates community interest in a case, but the court is not ruled by community opinion at all. The court is ruled only by the law. The law, in this case, is clear.

MORE: Why was Cain Velasquez charged with attempted murder? Details of high-speed chase, shooting revealed

“A diagnosis of CTE or TBI might be a suitable defense or a pertinent defense or something that should be considered for mitigation. But for this court, it does not establish a change in circumstance under the law. It does not reduce the risk. The court will now rule that the alleged facts of the case are opposite of what CTE alleges. There was CTE or conditions or things that might cause someone to act impulsively, or in this case, the facts allege a deliberate act of following the family to Mr. Goularte’s house, and then waiting for Mr. Goularte, and then shooting at Mr. Goularte and his family. That’s something for the trial court. That’s not an issue for this court.”

Paul Bender, Goularte’s stepfather, stated that Velasquez has no regard for human life.

“If given the opportunity, I believe he will try to finish what he started,” Bender stated.

I am fearful for my life, as well as for the lives of my family. No amount of bail or GPS monitor will stop Cain Velasquez.

The 39-year-old Velasquez is due back in court for a plea hearing on June 10. The hearing will indicate whether his case will go to a trial or not. If convicted, Velasquez faces up to 20 years in prison.

Mark Geragos, Velasquez's attorney, told ESPN that that he believes Velasquez will be vindicated if if the case goes to a jury of "right-thinking people."

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Velasquez, 39, made his MMA debut in 2006 and joined the UFC in 2008. He went 12-3 with the promotion. He beat Brock Lesnar for the UFC heavyweight title in 2010. After losing the belt to Junior dos Santos in 2011, he regained the title in a rematch in 2012. Velasquez's last MMA fight was a knockout loss in February 2019 to Francis Ngannou.

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