The Mirjana Puhar murder has led to a second arrest, with police in Charlotte nabbing a 19-year-old they say is responsible for slaying the America’s Next Top Model star.
Puhar was among three people found dead at a home on Norris Avenue in February. Police had already arrested 19-year-old Emmanuel Rangel, who was caught the day after the killings.
This week police also arrested David Ezequel Lopez, who, like Rangel, is facing three counts of murder. Police have not yet said what role they believe each suspect played in the killings.
Mirjana Puhar competed on the show last year and was eliminated in the 10th episode. The 19-year-old model was a native of Serbia, coming to the United States in her childhood to escape her war-torn home.
A profile published last year in the Charlotte Observer noted the path that took her to America’s Next Top Model.
“After the Kosovo War, when she was about 5, her family fled the country and ended up in New York City. Her parents had about $50 to their names. They came to North Carolina about 10 years ago and today, her father is an electrician, her mother works at a restaurant and her 14-year-old brother is a freshman at East Mecklenburg High School.
“Puhar has been modeling off and on since she was 12, but really got serious at 17. Most of her pre-“ANTM” experience was with Charlotte modeling centers such as Barbizon and John Casablancas (both of which she does not speak highly of), and during runway shows at Charlotte Fashion Week (which she does).”
But Mirjana noted that she got on a rough path while in high school, getting into fights and into trouble before eventually dropping out.
“I was a wild child,” she says. “I went out, had fun, partied, whatever – I didn’t really have the best influences around me.”
The other man killed in the shooting, 23-year-old Jonathan Alvarado, was said to be dating Puhar. Also killed was Alvarado’s roommate, 21-year-old Jusmar Gonzaga-Garcia.
Neighbors said the group recently moved to the neighborhood and knew little about them or their relationship to the suspected murders. Police had stated in the past that the suspects were likely acquainted with the victims.
“I really didn’t know them, but I used to see them in the neighborhood,” said neighbor Quay Teasley. “Only the people who did it and the people who passed away know exactly what happened.”
Police said the murder of Mirjana Puhar may have been drug related but have not given out many details.
[Image via CNN]