Many of you turned out for Cage Combat 7 and no doubt enjoyed yourself and the great night of fights. What you may not know is that the fights almost didn’t happen.
About 2 hours before the fights were scheduled to start there was no cage built. All that stood in the middle of the Humble Civic Center was a mat on a platform; no cage walls, no door, nothing.
At the center of it all was the company that Garcia Promotions uses for its production (including the cage) – a company recently purchased by Brett Boyce. Boyce (who is best known for his grappling tournaments and his new management company Made to Win) recently took over the cage rental company, buying it from his grappling tournament business partner Seth Daniels.
It all started the night before as things started to unfold and it was obvious that the show was in jeopardy. That’s when Seth Daniels was flown in from Colorado to try and save the show. Daniels pulled of nothing short of a miracle to get the show up and running by 8:30pm on Friday. Sure that was about an hour late, but when you consider the fact that the camera and cables were missing (2 videos on a screen are required by TDLR at every show), several bolts needed to hold the cage together were gone, and many other important items necessary to run the show had disappeared – what Daniels was able to do (with the help of a team) was extraordinary.
Not lost in all of this was why this was happening in the first place.
Rumors began to circulate around the Humble Civic Center that Boyce was nowhere to be found and had possibly left Garcia Promotion high and dry. At the same time other rumors surfaced that something else had happened. The rumor was that it wasn’t Brett that had stiffed the promotion but it might have been Brett’s business associate (and local fighter) Lee Higgins who was to blame for all the problems and delays.
Higgins was Brett’s operations manager for his MMA cage rental company and local residential construction projects.
Trying to make sense of it all (and not wanting to base our information off the multiple rumors that were floating around) we did some investigating on our own. The information we received painted a picture of a situation that one might see in a TV drama.
According to our sources, Higgins had allegedly stolen many items from Brett Boyce and Brett’s companies including large sums of money and property. It appeared that this alleged theft was the cause of the all the problems and delays effecting the timely launch of Cage Combat 7.
We felt that just using our sources (even thought they were reliable) wasn’t enough so we dug deeper. What we found seemed to support our initial information.
According to public records on the Harris County District Clerks Office web site; on January 13, 2012 theft charges were filed against Higgins and a warrant was issued for his arrest. The alleged theft charges are for between $20,00 and $100,000. The site also reports that a bond of $162,400.00 has been set.
This didn’t seem to be Higgins’ first run in with the law.
We continued to investigate and found that Higgins, who once fought on Strikeforce agains Ryan Couture, was convicted of a class 1 misdemeanor in Wake County North Carolina. According to the North Carolina Department Of Correction Offender Public Information website, Higgins was convicted on 04/04/2008 and given a “community suspended sentence”.
According to the website (as of Jan. 16, 2012) Higgins current status is that of an absconder and states “This offender is an absconder from probation/parole supervision. If you have any information on this person’s whereabouts, please contact the NC Division of Community Corrections at 1-888-646-0024.”
We also found a record that was filed on July 1, 2011 in Harris County that indicated Higgins was an alleged fugitive. We don’t know if this filing was for the North Carolina warrant, but the filing shows a case status of complete and a defendant status of disposed.
We reached out to Brett Boyce for a statement, but he had no comment on the matter at this time.