Brad Soper was found in the home of Johan Schwartz who confronted him
Brad Soper was found in the home of Johan Schwartz who confronted him

Police probe gym link after home invasion death

DETECTIVES are investigating if southwest Sydney father Johann Schwartz frequented the same gym as the personal trainer who died after the pair were involved in a fight inside Schwartz's home.

Police are speaking to friends of champion "strongman" Bradley Soper who worked at a number of separate gyms in the CBD over the last three years.

The Daily Telegraph understands both Soper, 35, and business analyst Mr Schwartz, 44, had used the Fitness First on Bond St in the city.

 

"One of the lines of inquiry we're looking into is if the two men are known to each other," a police source said.

Soper is understood to have worked at Snap Fitness on George St and Lift Performance Centre at Redfern.
One trainer believed the pair would have crossed paths.
"They'd know each other by sight for sure," he said.

Soper had moved into a one-bedroom flat in Oran Park, just streets away from the Schwartz family home in Harrington Park, several weeks before his death on Sunday morning.

He had been living with the family of long-term girlfriend, senior lawyer Kaisha Gambell, in Bringelly, near Liverpool, until the relationship broke down late last year.

Detectives are investigating if Schwartz frequented the same gym as the personal trainer. Picture: Flavio Brancaleone
Detectives are investigating if Schwartz frequented the same gym as the personal trainer. Picture: Flavio Brancaleone

Soper died as he was being restrained in a chokehold after the South African father found him crouching behind a sofa, while Mr Schwartz's wife and two-year-old daughter were upstairs.
It is believed Soper accessed the home through an open garage door.

Soper is understood to have strewn objects around the house before Mr Schwartz, alerted by the sound of his barking dogs, came downstairs.

The personal trainer spent his final hours grunting and making inaudible noises as he roamed barefoot through bushland and along the streets of Harrington Park and Oran Park.

Soper's friend Jes Murphy said she was in the process of recruiting Soper to an inner west gym where she worked due to his strength and fitness expertise.

Soper died as he was being restrained in a chokehold by Mr Schwartz
Soper died as he was being restrained in a chokehold by Mr Schwartz

"I was lining up for him to have a place working in the gym in the city as a senior trainer," Ms Murphy said.

"I'm just completely shocked, I didn't think it was true at first."
Soper won the 90kg class of the Asia's Strongest Man competition in 2017 and posted prolifically on social media about his theories on strength, fitness and mentoring young trainers.

Mr Schwartz is keen gymgoer known as "world's strongest IT nerd" at the CBD Fitness First gym.



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