BEVERLY HILLS CA DECEMBER 2, 2021 - Beverly Hills police Chief Mark Stainbrook announces the arrest of Aariel Maynor in connection with the shooting death of Jacqueline Avant, wife of music executive Clarence Avant, during an apparent break-in at the couple's Trousdale Estates home in Beverly Hills on Thursday, December 2, 2021. Maynor was arrested about 3:30 a.m. Wednesday following an unrelated burglary in the 6000 block of Graciosa Drive in the city of Los Angeles, committed about an hour after Avant's shooting, according to Chief Stainbrook. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Beverly Hills police have made an arrest in the killing of Jacqueline Avant, a prominent Los Angeles philanthropist, political insider and the wife of music legend Clarence Avant.

Police arrested Aariel Maynor, 29, of Los Angeles in connection with the slaying, Beverly Hills authorities said during a news briefing Thursday.

Maynor used an AR-15 rifle during the incident and then shot himself in the foot at another home during an alleged burglary attempt in Hollywood, police said.

Multiple surveillance cameras showed Maynor’s vehicle heading east out of Beverly Hills after the shooting in which Avant was killed, authorities said.

 

Shortly after Avant was shot, officers from the Los Angeles Police Department’s Hollywood division arrived to a home in the 6000 block of Graciosa Drive. They found a man in the backyard who had a gunshot wound to his foot. Police determined that he had accidentally shot himself during an alleged burglary attempt at the home and was arrested and taken to a local hospital.

An “astute watch commander” in Hollywood connected the dots to the Avant case and alerted Beverly Hills, LAPD Deputy Chief Blake Chow said. Maynor has been in police custody since.

“It is a sad case, and although we are happy we have an arrest, I feel so bad for the family,” Beverly Hills Police Chief Mark Stainbrook told The Times.

Police say the suspect shot Jacqueline Avant with an AR-15 rifle in the Avants’ home. The weapon was described as a “traditional” AR-15 rifle, not the compact variety.

The Beverly Hills Police Department has taken charge of the investigation into both the Beverly Hills and Hollywood incidents. Police say surveillance and other evidence, including the rifle, linked Maynor to both cases. Stainbrook said the motive behind the shooting remains unclear, but the evidence points to only one suspect.

Maynor was released from state prison in September and “has an extensive criminal record” involving burglary and robbery, Stainbrook said.

Maynor was sentenced to a five-year prison term in November 2013 for second-degree robbery and inflicting great bodily injury, according to California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation spokesperson Joe Orlando.

Most recently, he served a four-year sentence for second-degree robbery with enhancements for a prior felony. He was released on parole supervision on Sept. 1, 2021, after serving his full sentence, Orlando said.

What appeared to be the suspect’s Facebook page says he attended Hartnell College in Salinas, Calif., and he was self-employed as an electrician. The page shows a Bible verse that reads, “It is an abomination for a king to commit wickedness because the throne is built on righteousness.”

According to the Department of Corrections, Maynor did not have a permanent address when he was released.

Police responded to a call of a shooting in the 1100 block of Maytor Place shortly before 2:30 a.m. Wednesday in the upscale Trousdale Estates neighborhood, and officers found Jacqueline with a gunshot wound when they arrived. She was taken to Cedars-Sinai Hospital, where she later died. Clarence and a security guard were also at the home during the shooting, Stainbrook said.

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

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