A who was recently released from state prison after serving sentences for robbery has been charged with the murder last week in Beverly Hills of Jacqueline Avant, 81, a philanthropist married to legendary music producer Clarence Avant.
Mrs. Avant was gunned down in her home during an armed burglary, one in a series of what the Los Angeles Times called “brutal, brazen” crimes that have rocked the city in the wake of the Black Lives Matter protests and “defunding” the police.
The Times reported Monday:
Prosecutors filed murder charges against a 29-year-old man Monday in the killing of Jacqueline Avant, a prominent philanthropist who was gunned down in her home last week.
Authorities also charged Aariel Maynor with attempted murder, saying he opened fire on a security guard with an AR-15-style rifle during a burglary at the Avants’ Beverly Hills home.
Maynor is accused of entering the Trousdale Estates home of music producer Clarence Avant and his wife, Jacqueline, early Wednesday and opening fire with the rifle.
Police caught Maynor after he allegedly shot himself in the foot after invading a nearby property.
He was released from state prison in September under parole supervision after serving a four-year sentence for robbery, and had earlier been sentenced to five years for a violent robbery.
George Soros-backed District Attorney George Gascón, who has been District Attorney for nearly a year and has boasted of reducing prison sentences in L.A. County, promised “to work together to hold accountable the people who commit violent crimes against our community,” the Times reported.
Violent crime is surging in cities across America, thanks to the “Ferguson effect,” which refers to the original event that launched the “Black Lives Matter” movement in 2014, after a police officer shot and killed an unarmed black man who had tried to seize his gun and had charged him. That event was falsely portrayed by activists and the media as if police had shot an innocent man trying to surrender — a claim summarized by the slogan, “Hands up, don’t shoot.” Since then, police have felt a lack of support from Democratic public officials, criminals have been emboldened, and race relations have soured.
The Black Lives Matter riots of 2020 that followed the murder of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis, Minnesota, made matters much worse. And Soros-funded prosecutors, like Gascón, who have won elections nationwide are pursuing ideological goals of “criminal justice reform” with little regard for the consequences.
As Michael Shellenberger observes:
Progressives sold criminal justice reform based on the idea that nonviolent offenders would be released into some kind of supervisory care, but Gascón and other progressive D.A.s are releasing many violent offenders with few restrictions. Law enforcement say they can feel the difference on the streets. “The criminals know they can do whatever they want,” said Beverly Hills police chief Mark Stainbrook after Avant’s death. “Then multiply that by all the prisoners released from jail because of the coronavirus and the no-bail and it’s a nightmare and very frustrating from our end of it.”
Last year, Gascón eliminated cash bail for many offenses.
The other issue is that the Los Angeles’ progressive government reduced the L.A Police Department’s budget by $150 million in July, lowering its staff to its lowest level in 12 years. Today, L.A. has 500 fewer police officers than it did at this time last year.
Gascón today makes his ideological motivations clear by urging L.A. residents to not be distracted by rising homicides and focus instead on the goal of reducing the jail and prison population. By having fewer people in jail and prison today, Gascón argues, there will be less crime and violence in the future. In response to direct questioning about rising homicides, Gascón told The New York Times, “people like me get paid to think a little further down the line.”
There is now a second recall effort targeting Gascón, after the first effort earlier this year failed to collect enough signatures.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.