SANTA MARIA, Calif. - Jhordy Ramirez's former boxing coach, Zenon Balderas, is speaking out about his former boxer. He tells us he's shocked about what happened last week.
Ramirez is accused of trying to stab his parents to death last week on a Santa Maria street.
"It's unbelievable, it's hard to believe, I can't believe it, because like I said he was a tremendous kid," Ramirez's Boxing Coach Zenon Balderas said.
If Coach Balderas' name sounds familiar, that's because he's the father and coach of Santa Maria's own Olympic boxer, Carlos Balderas.
"He [Ramirez] was a tutor in high school, the principal knows him, his counselor.. they love him," Balderas said.
You don't have to look far to find pictures of Jhordy Ramirez around Coach Zenon Balderas' hometown gym in Santa Maria.
"That's Jhordy and I think that (picture) was in 2012," Ramirez's former boxing coach Zenon Balderas said.
Balderas coached Ramirez until just a few months ago when Ramirez injured his left hand and decided to give up boxing and focus on school.
"It's unbelievable, it's hard to believe.. I can't believe it, because like I said he was a tremendous kid, he was a tutor in high school, the principal knows him, his counselor.. they love him," Balderas said.
Balderas has known Ramirez for years.
"Well I've known Jhordy since he was 8-years-old.. that's when he came to me and my brother and that's when we started training him," Balderas said.
Balderas says he knows Jhordy as a smart kid.
"Jhordy, he's a special kid, he was very respectful, very respectful, very disciplined, very smart kid, in school he used to have nothing but A plus, A's,A's,A's," Balderas said.
Ramirez even became a professional boxer and fought two professional fights.
"He was very strong and he could do everything inside the ring," Balderas said.
Balderas says things changed when he got hurt and stopped boxing.
"One hour before the incident he called the police and told the police I need help, I don't feel good, I'm sick, I don't know what's going on with me," Balderas said.
Balderas says Ramirez may be suffering from mental illness or drugs may have been involved.
"I hope he gets help because he needs help, he needs help, like I said he's a good kid and nobody is perfect, everybody makes mistakes and I think everyone deserves a second chance, I hope they send him instead of prison they send him to a rehab place where he can recover," Balderas said.
Balderas says no matter what happens, Ramirez is welcome back to the boxing gym if he'd like to train.