Former ‘America’s Next Top Model’ contestant among three dead in NC murder
(New York Daily News) CHARLOTTE, N.C. – A one-time contestant on “America’s Next Top Model” was among three people found Tuesday evening shot to death in a North Carolina home, according to friends.
Stunning Serbian native Mirjana Puhar, 19, was found murdered around 5 pm. in a grisly scene at a Norris Ave. home in Charlotte, police said.
A friend close to Puhar, who competed on Season 21 of ANTM last year, called cops after finding the aspiring model and her boyfriend dead at the bloody scene, TMZ reported. Another man was also among the dead.
Cops on Wednesday busted 19-year-old Emmanuel Jesus Rangel and charged him with three counts of murder in the triple killing.
The other victims were identified as Puhar’s 23-year-old boyfriend, Jonathan Alvarado, and his roommate and best friend, 21-year-old Jusmar Gonzaga-Garcia.
Authorities are investigating whether the murders are related to a fatal shooting early Sunday at a hotel in Matthews, N.C. In that case, cops found one man dead and a second seriously wounded around 1 am. in the parking lot of a Microtel Inn, some 14 miles southeast of Charlotte.
Rangel is charged in that killing, too, police told the Charlotte Observer, as is 19-year-old Edward Sanchez and 18-year-old Emily Ann Isaacs. Sanchez and Isaacs fled to Harris County, Texas, after that slaying, where they were taken into custody and are awaiting extradition, the paper reported.
In a joint statement, Ken Mok and Tyra Banks – the executive producers of “America’s Next Top Model” – said they were stunned to hear Puhar was killed.
“We are deeply saddened to learn of the tragic news,” the statement read. “She was a vivacious and promising young woman. Our hearts and prayers go out to her loved ones.”
The man killed in that shooting was identified as 22-year-old Charlotte man Rosool Jaleel Harrell.
Sanchez’s Facebook page is filled with pictures of guns and selfies of him smoking marijuana blunts.
A source told TMZ, which first identified Puhar as a victim, that the triple murder was drug related and that the victims knew their killer.
Gonzaga-Garcia, one of the victims, posted a picture Sunday to his Facebook page of $20 bills spread out across a table in a circle with the word, “Lifestyle” overlaid the image.
A profile of Puhar, who was eliminated during the 10th episode of the season, published last summer in the Charlotte
Observer reveals the “perky, plucky” budding model moved to New York City with her family in 2000 before landing in Charlotte.