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Police Arrest Suspect In the Murder of Philanthropist Jacqueline Avant, Wife of Music Icon Clarence Avant

Police have arrested a suspect in the murder of philanthropist Jacqueline Avant, wife of music legend Clarence Avant.

Authorities announced the arrest one day after Avant’s murder; officials with the Beverly Hills Police Department say they apprehended the suspect, Aariel Maynor, about one hour after the murder of Avant in her Beverly Hills, California, home.

Beverly Hills, California – January 25: (L-R): Jacqueline Avant and Clarence Avant attend the Pre-GRAMMY Gala and GRAMMY Salute to Industry Icons Honoring Sean “Diddy” Combs on January 25, 2020, in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for The Recording Academy)

Maynor reportedly was attempting to burglarize a home in Hollywood when he said he accidentally shot himself in the foot. 

Maynor was reported to have a gunshot wound from an AR-15 rifle. According to CBS Los Angeles, “LAPD’s Hollywood Division officers were alerted to a shooting and burglary call in the 6000 block of Graciosa Drive at about 3:30 a.m., where Maynor was found in the backyard of the home, suffering from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the foot.”

Police noted that an “astute watch commander at Hollywood that, starting to put two and two together,” reached out “to Beverly Hills,” said LAPD Deputy Chief Blake Chow. Authorities recovered the rifle they believe was used to shoot Avant, 81. Maynor remains in custody at a hospital where he was taken.

Beverly Hills police Chief Mark Stainbrook stated that Maynor was identified multiple times in surveillance videos leaving the scene of Avant’s murder, which took place around 2:23 a.m. on Dec. 1. Clarence Avant and a private security guard were at the home at the time; no one else was injured and the motive is unclear, according to Stainbrook. No items reportedly were stolen from the home. Stainbrook further described Maynor as a “parolee with an extensive criminal history.” Maynor was recently released on parole supervision on Sept. 1; he had served four years for second-degree robbery. He has a history of other robbery convictions and charges of grand theft. 

Police have arrested Aariel Maynor in the murder of philanthropist Jacqueline Avant. (Photo:

Once Maynor is medically cleared, he will officially be booked into jail. 

Condolences over Avant’s death have poured in for the beloved friend, generous philanthropist and former model. Former President Bill Clinton spoke of Avant’s passing on Twitter. “Jackie Avant was a wonderful woman, a great partner to Clarence and mother to Alex and Nicole, an active citizen & a dear friend to Hillary and me for 30 years. She inspired admiration, respect & affection in everyone who knew her. We are heartbroken. She will be deeply missed,” Clinton wrote. 

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