Jacqueline Avant of Neighbors of Watts
Jacqueline Avant, the 81-year-old wife of legendary music executive Clarence Avant, was shot to death early Wednesday morning in a home invasion robbery in Beverly Hills, according to police and multiple media reports.
The shooting was reported at about 2:25 a.m. in the 1100 block of Maytor Place and the victim died at a hospital, according to the Beverly Hills Police Department.
No suspect description was available, and no arrests were reported at press time.
According to TMZ.com, Avant was killed in a home invasion in the Trousdale Estates neighborhood.
“A family source tells us the people who broke into the house fired shots and hit Jackie. Clarence was home at the time. We do not know if he was hurt,” TMZ reported.
Clarence Avant is known as the Godfather of Black Music, and has been regularly celebrated by artists such as Jay-Z and Diddy, L.A. Reid and Babyface. He began as a talent manager in the 1950s, worked at Venture Records in Southern California and founded L.A.-based Sussex Records and Avant Garde Broadcasting. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in October.
“I am heartbroken by this morning’s news of the tragic and shocking murder of Mrs. Jacqueline Avant,” said Rep. Karen Bass (CA-37). “Mrs. Avant was a force for compassion and empowerment locally and nationally for decades, as well as a model of service and giving back to those who needed it most. My thoughts are with the Avant family as they mourn the loss of such a wonderful wife, mother and friend.”
Jacqueline Avant served as president of the Neighbors of Watts. She was also on the board of directors of UCLA’s International Student Center.