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Justin Levens
Born April 18, 1980(1980-04-18)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Died December 17, 2008 (aged 28)
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight 205 lb (93 kg; 14.6 st)
Style Vale Tudo
Fighting out of Newport Beach, California
MMA record
Total 17
Wins 9
By knockout 7
By submission 2
Losses 8

Justin Robert Levens (April 18, 1980 – December 17, 2008) was an American professional mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter who fought for the UFC and, later in his career, the Southern California Condors of the International Fight League. Levens was a participant in Ultimate Fighting Championship and World Extreme Cagefighting but had not fought with either since 2006. Levens and his wife died from gunshot wounds in mid-December 2008. The circumstances of their deaths remain under investigation, but the incident is believed to have been a murder-suicide, according to law enforcement officials.



Levens grew up poor in Philadelphia housing projects and was on his own from age 15.[1] He eventually moved to Newport Beach, California, where he learned to channel his aggressive energy into organized fighting. He began training at Marco Ruas' Vale Tudo academy in Orange County, and became a light heavyweight mixed martial arts fighter. Levens fought from 2004 to 2008, taking the nickname "Executioner".[2] Levens' first fight was a victory against Hector Carrilo in 2004. He had a string of wins after the Carrilo fight for almost two years. After his seventh win, he lost to Scott Smith in January 2006.[2] He had a declining record for the remainder of his career, interspersed with a pair of back-to-back victories against Justin Hawes and Brian Warren in fall 2006.

His last fight was scheduled for July 2008, but did not occur due to time constraints that led to scheduling issues. Levens had tested positive for oxymorphone before the fight and was suspended until January 2009.[3] Friend Tom Atencio said Levens was troubled by his declining career.[1] Kimbo Luzano, another friend, said Levens may have been depressed about not being able to fight and money issues, as well as troubled by the suicide of fellow MMA fighter and friend Jeremy Williams.[4]

On December 17, 2008, Levens and his wife, Sarah McLean-Levens, 25, were found dead in their home in Laguna Niguel, California. Both had died of gunshot wounds; in Levens' case, to his head.[1] The police are investigating the deaths as a possible murder-suicide.[5] No suicide note was found,[5] but a handgun was found close to Leven's body.[6] There were no signs of a struggle.[7]

Fight record

Record Result Opponent Method Event Title Date Round Time Location
9-8 Loss United States Kenny Ento Submission (Triangle Choke) PFC 4 - Project Complete 10/18/2007 1 2:15 United States Lemoore, California, USA
9-7 Loss United States Nathan James Decision (Unanimous) IFO - Wiuff vs. Salmon 9/1/2007 3 5:00 United States Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
9-6 Loss United States Brian Foster TKO (Punches) IFL - Chicago 5/19/2007 1 1:17 United States Chicago, Illinois, USA
9-5 Loss Belarus Vladimir Matyushenko TKO (Strikes) IFL - Los Angeles 3/17/2007 1 3:53 United States Los Angeles, California, USA
9-4 Loss United States Reese Andy Decision (Unanimous) IFL - Oakland 1/19/2007 3 4:00 United States Oakland, California, USA
9-3 Win United States Brian Warren TKO (Triangle Choke) BIB - Beatdown in Bakersfield 11/17/2006 1 2:53 United States Bakersfield, California, USA
8-3 Win United States Justin Hawes TKO (Strikes) WEC 24 - Full Force 10/12/2006 1 1:28 United States Lemoore, California, USA
7-3 Loss Brazil Jorge Santiago KO (Knee) UFC Ultimate Fight Night 5 6/28/2006 1 2:13 United States Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
7-2 Loss United States Evan Tanner Submission (Triangle Choke) UFC 59 - Reality Check 4/15/2006 1 3:14 United States Anaheim, California, USA
7-1 Loss United States Scott Smith KO WEC 18 - Unfinished Business 1/13/2006 1 1:58 United States Lemoore, California, USA WEC Light Heavyweight Championship
7-0 Win Brazil Jorge Oliveira KO (Slam) WEC 17 - Halloween Fury 4 10/14/2005 1 United States Lemoore, California, USA
6-0 Win United States Tony Lopez Submission (Rear Naked Choke) WEC 15 - Judgment Day 5/19/2005 1 3:46 United States Lemoore, California, USA
5-0 Win United States Tosh Cook Submission (Triangle Choke) GC 35 - Cold Fury 3/13/2005 1 3:56 United States Porterville, California, USA
4-0 Win United States Eber Saulido TKO TC 7 - Total Combat 7 1/29/2005 1 Mexico Tijuana, Mexico
3-0 Win United States Mitch Nester TKO GC 33 - Brutal Force 12/12/2004 1 1:02 United States Porterville, California, USA
2-0 Win United States Jeff Dowmam KO (Kick) GC 28 - Gladiator Challenge 28 6/22/2004 1 0:09 United States Porterville, California, USA
1-0 Win United States Hector Carrilo TKO TC 3 - Total Combat 3 5/30/2004 1 2:00 Mexico Tijuana, Mexico


  1. ^ a b c Pugmire, Lance; Susannah Rosenblatt (December 18, 2008). "Justin Levens' death may have been part of a murder-suicide". Los Angeles Times.,0,3276564.story. Retrieved 2008-12-19.  
  2. ^ a b De Leon, Kris (December 18, 2008). "UFC: Justin Levens and Wife Found Dead". BuddyTV. Retrieved 2008-12-18.  
  3. ^ "Justin Levens and wife found dead". December 18, 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-18.  
  4. ^ Jolly, Vik; Alejandra Molina, Chris Caesar, and Lois Evezich (December 18, 2008). "Martial arts fighter was to be in court day he was found dead". The Orange County Register. Retrieved 2008-12-19.  
  5. ^ a b Rosenblatt, Susannah (December 18, 2008). "Murder-suicide suspected in death of UFC fighter Justin Levens, wife". Los Angeles Times.,0,228899.story. Retrieved 2008-12-18.  
  6. ^ Patton, Vernon (December 18, 2008). "MMA fighter Levens may have shot wife in murder-suicide". International Business Times. Retrieved 2008-12-18.  
  7. ^ "Martial arts fighter, wife found dead". December 18, 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-18.  

Further reading

External links

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