Brazilian journalist Kennedy Salomé Lenk was asleep at home with his wife and children in the small town of Afonso Cláudio, in Espírito Santo, north of Rio de Janeiro, when he awoke to gunshots at around 1 a.m. on March 10, according to news reports.
He later found eight bullet holes in his car, which was parked in his garage, he told CPJ. Lenk, who works as a correspondent for the newspaper Montanhas Capixabas and as a reporter for the radio station Educadora AM, told CPJ that he thought the attack was related to his work.
“I believe that this was in retaliation for my work, which is dedicated to combatting corruption and trafficking. This was not a robbery… They want to get me out of the fight,” he told CPJ via text message.
Witnesses told reporters that they saw two men drive away on a motorcycle after the shots were fired. No arrests have yet been made in the case.
CPJ was unable to reach local police for comment. Local news reports said that the police were investigating whether the attack might be related to the journalist’s work.
Lenk told CPJ that he has received no death threats, but that drug dealers had previously yelled at him on the street about his reporting. His most recent articles for Montanhas Capixabas were about the arrest of local drug dealers, car accidents, and domestic violence.