According to his lawyer, former King of the Cage (KOTC) welterweight champion David Gomez, 39, is suffering from COVID-19 while incarcerated at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, New York (per New York Daily News). However, not everyone is convinced that the former fighter has the deadly virus.
Gomez, who has a 17-10 pro record between 2008 and 2017, is detained and awaiting trial on charges of trafficking cocaine and heroin from his home state of California into Queens, NY.
This week Gomez’s lawyer, Ross Galin, alleged that his client began feeling chest pains two weeks ago and that he was removed from his cell and put into solitary confinement after exhibiting a fever of 105 degrees. Gomez had been housed in a unit where two other inmates had tested positive for COVID-19.
Galin revealed that Gomez is currently receiving medical check ups twice a day. The attorney claimed that this wasn’t sufficient care for his client. “COVID-19 has induced respiratory distress that can go from mild to critical in mere hours,” wrote Galin in court documents.
Galin also claimed that in the one phone call he has had with Gomez since he became ill, Gomez coughed and had difficultly breathing and speaking. Furthermore, Galin claimed that Gomez currently had no access to hand sanitizer and cleaning supplies.
On Friday Galin petitioned the court to have Gomez moved from a jail medical treatment center to a hospital. “[Where Gomez is currently being held] was not intended to function as an isolation ward for those with serious medical conditions, and Mr. Gomez should not be sentenced to death due to placement in this isolation unit,” said Galin. “Significant medical monitoring and access to the MDC’s medical facilities provides him with a better opportunity for survival.”
Brooklyn Assistant U.S. Attorney Nomi Berenson has argued that Gomez does not have COVID-19. Berenson claimed that the inmate’s temperature never eclipsed 100.6 degrees. “I think what the medical records show first and foremost is that the defendant [Gomez] is not a reliable reporter of fact,” added Berenson.
After hearing Berenson’s argument, Brooklyn Federal Magistrate Judge Robert Levy declined a request for Gomez to be transferred to a hospital.
“I do see cause for concern and cause for monitoring. I don’t see an immediate need to transfer him to a medical unit,” said Levy in his ruling.
At this time of writing COVID-19 has killed at least 7,000 deaths in the state of New York. The losses in New York are the highest of any state in the U.S.
Before being locked up Gomez’ last bout came against current UFC fighter Kevin Holland at KOTC: Supernova in 2017. Gomez has also competed in Bellator (losing to Karl Amoussou).