Suspect in Publicist Murder Commits Suicide

Senior Editor
12.02.10 14 Comments

(Serious Cat was among the first on the scene.  Photo credit: Kevork Djansezian)

Two weeks ago, famed Hollywood publicist Ronni Chasen, 64, was shot to death in Beverly Hills late at night while driving her Mercedes home from the Burlesque premiere.  Chasen was found inside her crashed car at the corner of Whittier and Sunset Boulevard in Beverly Hills with five bullet wounds.  The story was baffling because the autoerotic asphyxiation ninjas who go around killing Hollywood’s elite usually don’t work this way.  Last night, police say a man sought as a “person of interest” in the case committed suicide as police tried to search his apartment.  Perhaps he was guilty, or maybe he just had some awesome porn.

The man — who was not immediately identified — pulled out a gun and shot himself as members of the Beverly Hills Police Department approached him in the small lobby of a transient apartment building just before 6 p.m., according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

The Los Angeles Times also quoted a neighbor who identified the man as being named “Harold.” The neighbor, Brandon Harrison, said that the man had said he had served in state prisons twice, and that he had stated that he expected to receive $10,000 for a job he did.

After the suicide, officers swarmed in front of the Harvey Apartments, in the 5600 block of Santa Monica Boulevard, putting up barriers to hold back a growing throng of reporters and onlookers.

The scene was a world away from the corner in Beverly Hills where Ms. Chasen was found slumped behind the wheel of her black Mercedes-Benz, the victim of multiple gunshots: A transient month-to-month hotel in a run-down section of Los Angeles, on the east side of Hollywood, officials said, where small studios rent for $625 a month. The suicide took place just outside the manager’s office in the small lobby right off Santa Monica Boulevard, residents there said. [NY Times]

Okay, settle down, spaz, you’re not writing a Ray Chandler novel.  “Bucky Chandler squinted his eyes as the light of his Lucky glowed in the flophouse squalor — he’d never seen such a maggot-ridden pus bucket in all his life.  Not in ‘Nam, not in his 15 years on the force, not even during his days as an exhibition wrestler for a male strip club.  $625 a month?  He’d seen veal with better apartments.  An animal, that’s what this was.”

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