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Aariel Maynor Arrested in Jacqueline Avant Murder

29-year-old accused of breaking in and fatally shooting the beloved philanthropist
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 3, 2021 12:00 AM CST
Suspected Killer of Jacqueline Avant Arrested
Security guards patrol behind police tape set up at the intersection of Maytor Place and Barrie Drive in the Trousdale Estates section of Beverly Hills, Calif., Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021.   (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

(Newser) – A suspect has been arrested in the slaying of Jacqueline Avant, well-known philanthropist and wife of legendary music producer Clarence Avant, in her Beverly Hills home early Wednesday. Aariel Maynor, 29, allegedly shot himself in the foot during an attempted burglary at a different home in the area hours after Avant was killed; police responded to the scene and found him there, then connected him to the break-in at Avant's home. He is accused of entering the home and shooting Avant, 81, with an AR-15 rifle, the Los Angeles Times reports. No motive has yet been revealed; police say it does not appear anything was taken from Avant's home, but they are still investigating.

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Police say both surveillance video and the rifle link Maynor, who has an "extensive" criminal history per CBS LA, to both crimes. "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 said. “The evidence thus far shows that only one suspect was involved in the crime and the motive remains under investigation. Our focus now has transitioned from finding a suspect to a continuing investigation that will lead to a successful prosecution."

"Our deepest gratitude to The City of Beverly Hills, the BHPD and all law enforcement for their diligence on this matter. Now, let justice be served," say the Avant and Sarandos families in a statement. The Avants' daughter Nicole is married to Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos, ABC 7 reports. (Read more Beverly Hills stories.)

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