Cain Velasquez’s attorney files petition to California appellate court requesting release from jail

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Cain Velasquez’s lead defense attorney, Mark Geragos, filed a 246-page petition Wednesday to the California Courts of Appeal asking for the release of the former UFC champion, who has been denied bail three times by the Santa Clara County Superior Court.

According to the document obtained by MMA Junkie, Geragos filed in the 6th District Court of Appeal in San Jose. The defense is asking for “immediate release on a reasonable bail or remand the matter to the superior court for an expedited hearing” and for the court to “grant such other appropriate relief.”

Velasquez, 40, has been held without bail since his Feb. 28 arrest on an attempt murder charge, among other gun-related counts, after he allegedly chased down a truck carrying Harry Goularte, a man accused of molesting Velasquez’s 4-year-old son, his mother and his stepfather, and shot at it, striking Paul Bender in the arm.

Judge Shelyna Brown three times has heard Geragos’ arguments for Velasquez to be granted bail – and each time she has pointed to a high-risk analysis as the reason for denial. Geragos has offered numerous stipulations, including a $1 million bail amount, relocation out of state, 24/7 in-person supervision, electronic monitoring, and more – all stipulations he reiterated in his appellate court filing.

In the petition, Geragos points to three main arguments the decision for denying Velasquez bail should be overturned:

  • The Pretrial Detention Order Violates the Due Process Clauses of the California and U.S. Constitutions.

  • The Court Abused Its Discretion in Denying Bail.

  • Even if Mr. Velasquez’s Pretrial Detention Was Initially Valid, His Continued Pretrial Detention Constitutes Impermissible Punishment in Violation of the Due Process Clauses of the California and U.S. Constitutions

Throughout the petition, the defense reiterates how Velasquez has been cooperative throughout the legal process and has no prior criminal history.

Additionally, the defense shed light on the encounter with Goularte. According to the defense, an “altercation” occurred when Velasquez and his wife accidentally ran into Goularte when they thought he was still in jail on the lewd acts charge involving their son.

The defense furthers that EEG-proven traumatic brain and potential CTE caused Velasquez to act impulsively and that his impulsive decision-making can be worked on with medical professionals.

The defense’s claim of an accidental run-in differs from the police report, which stated that its “investigation showed that Velasquez followed Victim Patricia Goularte and Victim Bender from their residence in San Martin to Morgan Hill and then to San Jose where Velasquez began shooting at the Victim’s automobile.”

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Velasquez is due back in court Aug. 5 for a motion hearing, with an Aug. 19 plea hearing also on the court calendar. Meanwhile, Goularte has pleaded not guilty to a felony charge of lewd acts with a child. He is set to have a preliminary trial hearing Sept. 20. The first hearing for a civil lawsuit filed by the Velasquez family against the Goulartes and Bender is set for Sept. 6, with summons served.

In the previously referenced civil case, the Velasquez family filed a lawsuit against the Goulartes and Bender after their 4-year-old son was allegedly molested by Harry Goularte possibly “100 times.”

If found guilty of attempted murder, Velasquez faces a minimum of 20 years and up to life in prison, according to the California penal code. He faces additional time if found guilty of other counts.