A Brief History
On January 6, 2014, only one year ago today, former Venezuelan beauty queen Monica Spear, age 29, was murdered on a lonely Venezuelan roadside along with her ex-husband during a botched robbery.
The beauty had previously reigned as Miss Venezuela 2004 and came in as the 4th runner up in the 2005 Miss Universe contest. She had married British citizen Thomas Berry in 2008 and had a daughter, but the couple divorced in 2012.
Of German and English extraction, Monica’s family had emigrated to Venezuela prior to her birth. Monica herself had moved to Orlando, Florida where she received a B.A. degree in theater from the University of Central Florida. She then returned to Venezuela in order to compete in beauty contests and to pursue a career as an actress, and she was able to parlay her pageant victories into a successful television career.
But on that fateful day, while on vacation, the family car broke down and while Spear, her ex-husband, and their daughter were waiting for assistance, local thugs stopped to rob the unlucky family. Either because of resisting the robbers or just plain murder, the adults were shot and killed though luckily the girl, having only been shot in the leg, was still alive when found and taken to a hospital.
Only 2 days later, 7 people were arrested for complicity in the murders and robbery, and some of the stolen property was recovered. President of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, claimed the murders were caused by Monica’s acting on soap operas! At any rate, the brutal murders brought international attention to the rising crime rate and lawlessness in Venezuela.
Unfortunately, the situation in many Latin American countries has become quite dangerous for honest people as the rule of law has been grossly undermined by drug dealers and kidnappers. As long as national leaders come up with excuses such as blaming television shows, it looks like things will not improve. Question for students (and subscribers): What do you think could help clean up crime in Latin America? Please let us know in the comments section below this article.
Your readership is much appreciated!
For more information, please see…
Isoliett, Maria. Capitulo Final: El Homicidio de Monica Spear (Spanish Edition). Ediciones B, 2014.