[CW: The following story includes descriptions of domestic violence]
According to Globo, Viviane Obenauf, 34, was arrested in Switzerland as “the main suspect” in the beating death of her husband; a 61-year-old man who prosecutors name only as ‘Thomas’, due to privacy laws.
Obenauf, who was born in Rio de Janeiro, is a former pro boxer with a 14-6 record. During her career she held the WBF International lightweight and WBA International super featherweight titles.
Globo reported that the victim died at a residence he shared with Obenauf and that an investigation determined he had died of a “sustained violent assault”. The victim’s death was ruled as a result of “serious injuries” caused by a blunt object.
Before entering the world of pro boxing Obenauf was an Olympic-level gymnast (per Globo). She dedicated herself to boxing at age 18 and had her first pro fight on April 21, 2014.
She won her debut and went 6-0 to begin her career before suffering her first loss (in 2016). After that loss she won three in a row to set up a bout with former Olympic champion, and current undisputed lightweight champion, Katie Taylor.
Obenauf lost to Taylor on points, but won her next fight, over Maja Milenkovic for the vacant WBF International lightweight title. Since winning that belt in 2017 she has gone 4-4, winning the WBA International super featherweight title and losing in efforts to claim the IBO lightweight title, IBF super featherweight title and IBO super featherweight title.
Obenauf retired from boxing in 2019 and opened a gym in Switzerland.
Swiss newspaper Blick interviewed an ex-boyfriend of Obenauf who claimed the former pro fighter assaulted him in the past. That individual claimed that Obenauf had punched him in the face four or five times.
Obenauf married her late husband, a restaurateur, in January.
Support for survivors of domestic violence can be found from the following organizations:
USA – The National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
Canada – DAWN-RAFH Canada
UK and Ireland – Women’s Aid: 0808-2000-247
Rest of the World – HotPeachPages
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