America's Next Top Model Alum Mirjana Puhar Dead in Apparent Triple Homicide
The crime is reported to be drug-related and a suspect has been taken into custody
Former America’s Next Top Model contestant Mirjana Puhar was found dead in a Charlotte, North Carolina, apartment on Tuesday. She was 19.
Puhar was one of three victims, including her boyfriend, Jonathan Alvarado, 23, and Jusmar Gonzaga-Garcia, 21. Gonzaga-Garcia was Alvarado’s best friend and roommate, according to TMZ.
A source tells TMZ that a friend of Puhar and her boyfriend heard the gunshots and called the police after entering the home and finding the bodies.
According to papers obtained by PEOPLE, police have arrested Emmanuel Jesus Rangel, 19, and charged him with three counts of first degree murder, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg police department said in a statement. The families have been notified of the deaths. Rangel has also been charged in connection with a murder that took place in Matthews, North Carolina, on Sunday, police said.
Puhar starred in cycle 21 of the Tyra Banks-led reality competition, which featured both male and female contestants. She was eliminated in the 10th episode of the season, which aired its finale on Dec. 5.
Banks and fellow Top Model executive producer Ken Mok issued this statement: “We are deeply saddened to learn of the tragic news about Mirjana Puhar. She was a vivacious and promising young woman. Our hearts and prayers go out to her loved ones.”
The winner of cycle 7 CariDee English also issued the following statement: “I am deeply saddened by the news of our ANTM girl, Mirjana Puhar, being killed. Not only was she just starting her life, she left in such a violent way. I send love and healing to her family. To her fans and the public, because she was on ANTM, she was able to touch lives with her story. Please keep her beauty and personality in your hearts by remembering to celebrate her as a young woman who had the courage to chase her dreams for a better life.”
The winner of cycle 21, Keith Carlos, took to Twitter to express his love and condolences.
Other contestants from her season have also Tweeted and Instagrammed their condolences.