AUGUST 07, 2022, SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL. It is with a heavy heart that we report on today’s tragic news. Earlier today one of the greatest jiu-jitsu athletes of all-time and current record holder for most IBJJF World titles in different weight classes (5), Leandro Lo was shot by a military police officer at a well-known event venue in the state’s capital.
The shooting took place at the Clube Sírio, in Indianópolis where Leandro and a few of his friends were watching the performance of the Pagode-style band, Pixote. According to Lo’s family lawyer, Mr. Ivan Siqueira Junior, 4 witnesses have identified the shooter as Henrique Otavio Oliveira Velozo, an active military police officer who fled the scene and was, earlier today, still at large (update, Mr. Velozo has been arrested and is in police custody).
The description of the events by the local media and Mr. Siqueira Junior seems to point to a degree of premeditation on Mr. Velozo’s part as he is said to have approached Leandro Lo‘s table to provoke the 8x IBJJF World Champion without any previous interaction that night. It is also told that Lo did exchange physically with the off-duty police officer and, after the two were separated and Lo returned to his friends, Velozo followed the 33 -year-old athlete and shot him in the head. According to the JP Domingo Brazilian newscast, the shooter kicked Lo’s inert body repeatedly after firing his weapon.
The Brazilian grappling legend was rushed to the hospital where he was pronounced brain dead.
Leandro Lo was a living legend of the sport, founder of Team New School Brotherhood, and record holder, who many believed to be one of the most positive and relatable athletes in the sport. Our sincerest condolences go out to Lo’s family, friends, and teammates.