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'Voice' singer Christina Grimmie shot, killed after concert in Orlando

Gunman traveled to Orlando to kill YouTube star

ORLANDO, Fla. – The gunman who shot and killed Christina Grimmie -- a singer who rose to fame on YouTube and appeared on "The Voice" reality TV show t-- raveled to Orlando just to attack her, authorities said on Saturday.

Orlando police identified the killer as 27-year-old Kevin James Loibl, of St. Petersburg. He was armed with two guns, a hunting knife and he had two loaded magazines. He didn't know Grimmie personally and may have been a deranged fan, police said. 

The killer "had plans to travel back to where he came from" by using public transportation, Police Chief John Mina said. 

The gunman shot her in front of fans at a meet-and-greet event. She was signing autographs for fans at a merchandise table after performing during a Before You Exit at The Plaza Live concert in Orlando on Friday night. She died early Saturday.

The 22-year-old singer from New Jersey finished third during season six of NBC's "The Voice" in 2014, competing on the team of Maroon 5 star Adam Levine. Grimmie amassed a following on YouTube as a teenager. Her YouTube videos of renditions of hit songs have garnered millions of views.

After the gunman shot her, Grimmie's brother, Marcus Grimmie, tackled him. He then shot and killed himself during the struggle, police said. They credited the singer's brother with preventing the gunman from hurting others.

"It was quick like pow, pow, pow, pow," witness Josh Call said during an interview with the Orlando Sentinel. 

Sgt. Wanda Miglio said that about 60 to 100 people were in attendance, though only a handful remained when the shooting happened.

Miglio said she did not know what security was like at the venue, or how the shooter got two guns inside. She also said she did not know if off-duty officers were working the concert.

"It was just a casual event," she said.

Grimmie had posted an upbeat video of herself on social media shortly before the concert was scheduled to begin. She encouraged fans to come see her perform.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported in 2014 that Grimmie moved to Los Angeles in 2012 after joining Selena Gomez on tour to focus on her singing career.

"I'm done being surprised by cool things she does. She's very talented and she's worked incredibly hard — it's a dangerous combination," her brother Mark Grimmie told the newspaper at the time.

 

Reactions to fatal shooting of singer Christina Grimmie:

Levine posted a photo of himself with Grimmie on Instagram, commenting before her death was confirmed: "I'm sad, shocked and confused. We love you so much Grimmie. We are all praying hard that you can pull through this ... this just isn't fair."

When reports of Grimmie's death first surfaced, #PrayforChristina was the top trending hashtag on Twitter. After her death was confirmed, #RIPChristina became the top trending hashtag as Grimmie's fans took to social media to express an outpouring of grief.

"The Voice" paid tribute to Grimmie on its official Twitter page: "There are no words. We lost a beautiful soul with an amazing voice."

"I'm stunned and disgusted and heartbroken that we lost that sweet little girl." — Blake Shelton (recording star and judge on "The Voice") on Twitter.

"I'm sad, shocked and confused. ... This just isn't fair." Adam Levine (recording star and Grimmie's coach on "The Voice") on Instagram.

"She was special. She walked in the room and she had an infectious laugh, she was determined, she was confident, but she was so incredibly sweet. You would never forget meeting her. I'm shocked she didn't actually win season six. Her star was shining so bright, which certainly makes this that much harder." — Carson Daly (host of "The Voice") on NBC's "Today" show.

"My deepest and most sincere condolences go out to the family of TheRealGrimmie. Such a tragic loss." — Josh Kaufman (singer and winner of "The Voice" on Season 6, when Grimmie finished third) on Twitter.

"Christina was such a kind, generous person, and so talented. What a light has been taken from the world." — John Green (author of "The Fault in Our Stars") on Twitter.

"I'm sick about TheRealGrimmie. Praying for her family. Now I'm scared to do meet and greets." — RaeLynn (singer and former contestant on "The Voice") on Twitter.

"Senselessly tragic but now a heaven's angel." — Robin Leach (TV personality) on Twitter.

"Devastating tragedy." — Adam Lambert (singer-songwriter) on Twitter.

"Very tough to read things like this and sending lots of power and love to her family & friends." — Theo Rossi (cast member of "Sons of Anarchy") on Twitter.

"May her beautiful soul rest in peace." — Kristen Merlin (singer and former contestant on "The Voice") on Twitter.

"We are horrified and deeply saddened over the unconscionable murder last night of Christina Grimmie. She was poised to be one of the Philadelphia area's next global music ambassadors, but her star shined all too briefly." — Alan Rubens (board chairman of the Philadelphia Music Alliance) in a statement.

Update: Police originally identified the killer as a 21 year old man from Florida. They later reported him to be 27 years old. 


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