A Playboy model has been arrested in connection with the death of a 71-year-old California doctor, who was found stuffed in the trunk of a car alongside a Las Vegas highway earlier this month, authorities said Thursday.
Kelsey Turner, a 25-year-old model who has been featured in Playboy Italia and Maxim, was arrested on March 21, two weeks after the body of Dr. Thomas Burchard, a child psychiatrist, was discovered in an abandoned car about 20 minutes outside of Las Vegas along State Route 147, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police said.
“The investigation conducted by LVMPD Homicide Detectives determined 25-year-old Kelsey Turner was involved in the incident,” police said, adding that the model was arrested by FBI agents in Stockton, California, and is “currently awaiting extradition to Clark County for open murder.”
She is being held in the San Joaquin County Jail without bail, authorities said.
On March 7, officers found Burchard’s body inside a car near the entrance to the Lake Mead National Recreation Area after a driver noticed a rock had been thrown through one of the vehicle’s front windows, police said. It was not immediately clear who owns the car.
The Clark County Coroner’s Office said the doctor died from “blunt force injury to the head,” and ruled it a homicide.
Samantha Turner told KSBW on Thursday that her daughter, Kelsey, has known the elderly doctor “for years,” and he paid the rent on a Salinas home where she lives with Kelsey and her children. It is not immediately known what kind of relationship Turner and Burchard shared.
“In fact, there were calls for police on a few occasions,” Marcelino Alejandro, a neighbor, told the news station, adding that Turner and her family lived in the house “for about a year,” and hosted multiple parties.
In a 2017 online interview with Playboy, Turner described herself as “impulsive” and someone who was “living life to the fullest because it is the only one I have.” She also entered a Maxim Cover Girl competition, finishing eighth in the West Group Nine category.
Buchard’s colleagues at Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula in California are mourning the loss of the longtime psychiatrist.
“Dr. Burchard was a psychiatrist in our behavioral health program for almost 40 years and was very helpful to many patients,” a spokeswoman for Montague Healthcare, which owns the hospital, told The Daily Beast. “It’s a very sad situation and our hearts go out to his family, friends, patients, and colleagues. We are notifying his patients and providing grief counseling for staff.”
Turner’s next court date is set for April 8. It wasn’t immediately clear if she has a lawyer.