MMA legend Cain Velasquez arrested after San Jose shooting

South Bay mixed-martial arts icon Cain Velasquez was arrested Monday and booked into jail on suspicion of attempted murder after a shooting Monday afternoon that injured a man in South San Jose, according to authorities.

Velasquez, 39, was booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail on Monday evening and is being held without bail, jail records show.

Velasquez denied a request from this news organization for a jail interview. His arraignment is tentatively scheduled for Wednesday.

The shooting was reported shortly before 3:15 p.m. Monday near the intersection of Monterey Highway and Bailey Avenue, near the southern edge of San Jose, police said. One man was hospitalized, and he is expected to survive.

Police told this news organization that Velasquez and the other man were traveling in separate cars before the confrontation unfolded near a cloverleaf interchange connecting the two roads.

Additional details about what led up to the gunfire were not immediately released by San Jose police Tuesday, but the booking offense and the absence of any other arrests indicate that Velasquez is suspected to be the shooter.

“The motive and circumstances surrounding this incident are still under investigation at this time,” police said in a tweet.

Velasquez, who retired from MMA in 2019, is a former two-time UFC heavyweight champion, having earned title belts in 2010 and 2012 and becoming the first fighter of Mexican descent to achieve that accolade. He was born in Salinas and was raised in Yuma, Arizona. He won junior college national wrestling title and was a two-time All-American at Arizona State University before his pivot into mixed-martial arts.

He gained prominence as he trained at the American Kickboxing Academy in South San Jose, and was among several high-profile fighters — including former star and current Gilroy High School wrestling coach Daniel Cormier — to give the gym an international profile over the past decade.

He carried a career record of 14-3, though injuries slowed the latter portion of his career, and he lost his last bout in 2019. Recently he had ventured into professional wrestling.

Check back later for updates to this story.

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