29-year-old Spear, a soap opera actress, and 39-year-old Henry Berry died in an attempted robbery on the highway between Puerto Cabello and Valencia in central Venezuela.

The 2004 Miss Venezuela winner lived in United States but was vacationing in Venezuela. The five-year-old daughter of the couple survived the attack that took place late on Monday but with a bullet wound in her leg, the government and local media said.

Responding to a reporter's question about the incident, President Nicolas Maduro said he learned from investigators that the victims' car burst a tire after running over something on the road, apparently placed by robbers to stop traffic.

Maduro said a tow truck arrived to help but armed robbers also appeared.

"They were inside the car and were riddled (with bullets)," the President said on state TV. "I ask those who assassinated this young person: what explanation do you have?" the President added.

Show business colleagues of Spear were shocked to hear the news of her death.

"I'm so sad for my Venezuela. My condolences for Monica Spear's family. Rage and impotence are what I feel right now," Venezuelan salsa singer Oscar D'Leon wrote on Twitter.


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