An arrest has been made in the killing of Jacqueline Avant, the wife of legendary music executive Clarence Avant, known as the “Black Godfather.”
The Los Angeles Times reports police arrested 22-year-old Aariel Maynor in connection with the crime. Police alleged he used an AR-15 rifle to shoot Jacqueline Avant. He reportedly shot himself in the foot at a different home during another alleged burglary attempt in the Hollywood neighborhood. An “astute watch commander” supposedly connected the two cases and contacted police. Surveillance footage linked Maynor to both cases.
Beverly Hills Police Chief Mark Stainbrook told The Los Angeles Times, “It is a sad case, and although we are happy we have an arrest, I feel so bad for the family.”
He continued, “To the Beverly Hills Community, let me reassure you, this is one of the most protected and patrolled cities in the world,” Stainbrook said Thursday. “Crime of any kind will not be tolerated here. Let this be a message to anyone thinking of committing a crime in Beverly Hills: You will be caught and brought to justice.”
Jaqueline Avant, 81, was shot on Wednesday (Dec. 1). Clarence Avant and a security guard were also at the home during the shooting, police reported. Jaqueline Avant was taken to Cedars-Sinai Hospital where she later died.
BET previously reported that Jacqueline Avant has been a prominent Los Angeles philanthropist over the decades, perhaps most notably for her work with the UCLA International Student Center. She is also the mother-in-law of Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos.
Clarence Avant, 90, often called the “Godfather of Black Music,” was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2021 and was the subject of the Netflix documentary The Black Godfather, produced by daughter Nicole Avant.
The doc portrays Clarence’s life from being connected to Louis Armstrong’s longtime manager Joe Glaser, to his connection to Al Capone who helped launch his career.