Dec 1, 2010 1 Comment ›› Pat Dollard
A man believed to be connected to the death of Hollywood publicist Ronni Chasen shot himself to death Wednesday night as police attempted to serve a search warrant at a Los Angeles hotel where he was staying, The Los Angeles Times reported.
Police told the newspaper the shooting occurred after 6:00 p.m. local time.
The man’s identity and link to Chasen were not known, but sources said investigators believe he was involved in her death.
Chasen was shot after midnight on Nov. 16 after attending the premiere of the new Cher film “Burlesque,” the soundtrack of which she was pushing for an Oscar nomination.
The 64-year-old was shot inside her Mercedes-Benz E-350 sedan before crashing into a lamp post near the intersection of Sunset Boulevard and Whittier Avenue in Beverly Hills. Police found the front passenger-side window of her vehicle shattered.
Some residents of the neighborhood said they heard gunshots followed by a loud noise they described as a “boom,” but none reported seeing any people or vehicles near the crash site.
Chasen, who had multiple gunshot wounds to her chest, was taken by ambulance to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead.
Police sources said they believe Chasen was shot as she was waiting to make a left turn from Sunset Boulevard on to Whittier Drive.
Earlier Wednesday, the coroner’s report into her death was leaked to the media.
The report said “there were three apparent gunshot wounds to the right side breast/chest area. There were two apparent gunshot wounds to the right shoulder. There was an apparent gunshot wound to the right upper back and the left upper back.”
“One bullet was recovered from her back while at the hospital and is possibly a 9mm hollow point,” the report continued.
Police suspect the fatal shot came from someone inside an SUV or truck which pulled up alongside the publicist’s car.
A retired detective who viewed the report said he believed the shooter was an “expert marksman,” ABC News reported, because of the manner in which the gun was turned sideways to make the shot.