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The killing of Jacqueline Avant: What we know about the investigation


Beverly Hills police said they are still trying to piece together the shocking killing of Jacqueline Avant — a prominent Los Angeles philanthropist and political insider and the wife of music legend Clarence Avant — at her Trousdale Estates home.

Authorities have not identified any suspects or offered a motive for the killing.

Here is a breakdown of what we know:


Officers responded to a call of a shooting in the 1100 block of Maytor Place shortly before 2:30 a.m. Wednesday. The couple lived in an upscale hillside neighborhood.


They found Jacqueline Avant, 81, wounded. She was taken to Cedars-Sinai Hospital, where she later died.

Police tape cordons off the area near the Beverly Hills home of music producer Clarence and Jacqueline Avant.

(Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

The crime

Police don’t believe the attack was random but have not yet determined whether it was a robbery.

“The motives in this case are still unknown, and we’re investigating all possible motives,” Beverly Hills Police Chief Mark Stainbrook said. “We will not speculate on anything that’s out there, including if this was a robbery attempt or not.”

Clarence Avant and a security guard were home at the time of the shooting. No one else was injured, Stainbrook said.

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The chief said it appeared that nothing obvious had been taken, but it will take some time to say with certainty.

Law enforcement sources told The Times that at least one intruder made it into the home before the shooting. Aerial video of the scene Wednesday showed a sliding glass door that appeared to have been shattered.

Security guards patrol behind police tape set up at the intersection of Maytor Place and Barrie Drive

Security guards patrol behind police tape set up at the intersection of Maytor Place and Barrie Drive.

(Chris Pizzello / Associated Press)

What’s next

Police said the investigation is still in it early stages.

The area has many security cameras, both public and private, that may contain relevant evidence. Detectives are examining the extensive surveillance system in the area for images and video of the suspects or their vehicle.

Some community leaders on Thursday were calling for Los Angeles County and Beverly Hills to offer a reward in the case, hoping that can help detectives solve it.

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