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'Food Network Star' contestant and husband murdered, arrest made

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Food Network

A North Carolina man has been arrested after the murder of a pregnant former Food Network Star contestant and her husband.

Robert Jason Owens, 36, was arrested Thursday for the murders of Cristie Schoen Codd, 38, and husband Joseph Codd, 45, according to the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office in North Carolina. All three are residents of Leicester, near Asheville, N.C.

The suspect is charged with two counts of felony first-degree murder, one felony count of breaking or entering, larceny after breaking and entering and free text felony, according to the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office. He is being held at the Buncombe County Detention Facility. The couple had been reported missing by family members on Sunday. Deputies found only the couple’s vehicles and pets at their home. 

Cristie was a contestant on the eighth season of The Next Food Network Star in 2012. She was five months pregnant with her first child at the time of their disappearance.

“Our thoughts go out to Cristie’s family and friends during this difficult time,” a Food Network spokesperson told EW.

She had small uncredited parts in a few films including Mona Lisa Smile and Get on Up, and worked as a caterer on several film sets including the recently released Focus starring Will Smith.