Tyler Perry vows to use ‘every available resource’ to find Jacqueline Avant’s killer
Perry tweeted several photos of the Avants and wrote: "My heart breaks for Clarence and Nicole and all the Avant family."
Film and television producer Tyler Perry is joining the chorus of celebrities decrying this week’s murder of Jacqueline Avant.
The 81-year-old wife of music executive and entrepreneur Clarence Avant was gunned down in their Beverly Hills, Calif., home during a home invasion on Tuesday night.
Perry shared several photos of the Avants on Twitter and wrote, “My heart breaks for Clarence and Nicole and all the Avant family. This world can be so cruel and cold!! I have no idea what kind of sub-human could shoot an 81 year old woman, and in her own home.”
He added, “But you can rest assured that every available resource will be used to find whoever is responsible for this awful nightmare. This is tremendously sad.”
Jacqueline “Jackie” Avant’s name continues to trend on Twitter as both celebrities and common folk mourn her death. A well-known philanthropist, she served as the president of the Neighbors of Watts, a support group focused on child care in that underserved community. She was also on the board of directors of UCLA’s International Student Center.
At a press conference, Beverly Hills Police Chief Mark Stainbrook noted that he did not believe that the home invasion at the Avant’s Trousdale Estates home was a random attack.
“The motives in this case are still unknown, and we’re investigating all possible motives,” he said, per The Los Angeles Times. “We will not speculate on anything that’s out there, including if this was a robbery attempt or not.”
Stainbrook is new to his role as chief of the department as he was just sworn in on Tuesday. He noted that the community has many cameras that may have captured important evidence.
During the press conference, the chief read a statement from the Avant family.
“Jacqueline was an amazing woman, wife, mother, philanthropist and 55-year resident of Beverly Hills who has made an immeasurable, positive contribution and impact on the arts community,” the statement said. “She will be missed by her family, friends and all of the people she has helped through her amazing life.”
According to The Times, violent crime — including home invasions — is on the rise in the city. Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore recently created a task force specifically for home robberies, saying the city had not seen crime “like this in decades.”
There have been at least 133 such robberies in affluent areas of Los Angeles, including the Sunset Strip, Melrose Avenue, the Jewelry District and Westside shopping areas, per the report.
Former BET host Terrence J. was accosted outside of his Sherman Oaks home in November, but he was able to escape without incident.
In a statement on Twitter Wednesday, Congresswoman Karen Bass, who represents Los Angeles and is a candidate for mayor, posted, “I’m heartbroken by this morning’s news of this tragic and shocking murder. Mrs. Avant was a force of compassion and empowerment locally and nationally for decades, as well as a model of service and giving back to those who needed it most.”