ORLANDO, FL—A deranged fan opened fire at an Orlando, FL, concert venue Friday, June 10, leaving 22-year-old YouTube sensation and NBC’s “The Voice” contestant Christina Grimmie dead.
Grimmie, from Marlton, NJ, was signing autographs and selling merchandise at the Plaza Live Venue in Orlando when she was shot and killed by 27-year-old Kevin James Loibl, of St. Petersburg, FL.
Loibil approached Grimmie after the show, where she opened for pop-rock band Before You Exit.
Over 120 people were still on scene at the venue when Loibl arrived, packing two loaded hand guns and a large hunting knife.
Loibl opened fire at approximately 10:30 p.m. Grimmie was taken to the hospital, but pronounced dead early Saturday morning from the injuries she sustained.
Marcus Grimmie, Christina’s brother and tour manager, tackled the shooter. Loibl then turned the gun on himself.
Orlando Police Chief John Mina described Marcus Grimmie’s actions as “heroic,” in a statement he gave Saturday.
“Very heroic actions by Marcus Grimmie to jump in and it definitely could have prevented further loss of life,” said Mina.
Law enforcement officials believe that Loibl traveled two hours from his St. Petersburg’s home specifically to commit this crime.
“She was doing a meet-and-greet, just signing autographs and selling merchandise. This white male approached her and opened fire, striking her,” said Mina. “We believe he came here to commit this crime.”
Plaza Live has unarmed security guards that are instructed to check bags and purses, but there are no metal detectors or pat-downs, according to law enforcement officials.
Grimmie was 19 when she auditioned for season five of NBC’s “The Voice” in 2014 – she caught “Voice” coach Adam Levine’s attention with her rendition of Miley Cyrus’ “Wrecking Ball.”
Musicians alike have offered their deepest condolences in the wake of Grimmie’s death.
“I met her during contestant interviews I gave for season six of the show” Caroline Pennell, who was featured in the top eight of NBC’s “The Voice” season five, told Canyon News.
“She was such a real and tangible figure to so many people – to those who knew her and even those who didn’t” said Pennell. “In a matter of minutes she was coming off the high of performing to being gone forever. It’s really sad,” she added.
Adam Levine has since offered to cover the Grimmie family’s funeral expenses.
“I found out this morning that Adam Levine personally called my mother and said he will pay for her funeral and her plane flight, and I was blown away,” Marcus Grimmie shared in a post Sunday.
Grimmie’s long-time manager, Brian Teefey, who doubles as Selena Gomez’s step-father, started a GoFundMe page titled, “Support The Grimmie Family” – the cause has since raised upwards of $170,000.