Monica Spear, a former Miss Venezuela and a popular Telenovela star, was shot and killed during a robbery. She and her ex-husband were killed during the crime and their five-year-old daughter was injured. Spear was just 29-years-old.
Spear was on vacation in her native Venezuela when she got into an accident on the Valencia-Puerto Cabello, reports NBC News. Her ex-husband, Henry Thomas Berry, 39, and their daughter Maya were also in the car when they were ambushed by robbers. Police said they were waiting for a tow truck when another car rolled up and started firing. There have been no arrests.
Spear’s family tried to convince her to leave the country, but, as her brother Ricardo Spear Mootz, told NBC News, she “loved her country too much.” She had previously been the victim of robberies six times.
According to The Orlando Sentinel, the UCF graduate won Miss Venezuela in 2004 and had homes in Miami and Venezuela.
“Mónica was not only a great actress, as she proved it as part of the cast of the telenovelas Flor Salvaje and Pasión Prohibida, but also a great person, very enthusiastic, with an extraordinary drive and determination,” Telemundo, which aired the shows she starred in, said in a statement. “We extend our condolences to her family and wish a quick recovery to her daughter.”
“She was a person with dreams, and a person who worked really hard for what she wanted,” her brother told NBC News, remembering Spear as a charitable person who loved using her fame for good.
Violent crime is a major issue for Venezuela, which has already seen 70 murders since New Year’s Day, reports NBC News.
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Deputy Editor Daniel S Levine is a longtime movie fan and a graduate of Hoftsra University.