The alleged killer of Jacqueline Avant, a longtime philanthropist in the Los Angeles area who was gunned down in her Beverly Hills home during a home invasion, pleaded guilty Thursday to her shooting death.
Aariel Maynor, 30, appeared in a Los Angeles courtroom in a wheelchair and wearing a suicide-prevention vest, Fox 11 in Los Angeles reported. He pleaded guilty to one count each of murder, attempted murder and being a felon in possession of a firearm and two counts of residential burglary with a person present.
He also admitted to using an assault long-barrel piston during the crimes and to shooting at a security guard, who was not injured, during the robbery. He faces up to 170 years to life in prison when he is sentenced on March 30.
"This crime continues to shock the conscience. Mrs. Avant’s death was a tragic loss felt by our entire community," Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón said in a statement. "In this case, the defendant is facing 170 years to life in prison and is ineligible for elderly parole. Our Bureau of Victim Services will continue to be in contact with the family and their representatives to offer trauma-informed services."
Maynor has a long criminal history that includes a five-year sentence for second-degree robbery in November 2013. He received a one-year sentence for grand theft and was paroled in March 2018. In July of that year, he absconded but was back on parole supervision in August 2018.
Avant, 81, was married to Clarence Avant, known as "The Godfather of Black Music," at the time of her death on Dec. 1, 2021.
An hour after the shooting, Maynor was arrested after allegedly shooting himself in the foot during another home robbery in the Hollywood Hills, authorities said.
A judge noted he was released on parole in September 2021, months before the killing, which sent shockwaves through Los Angeles at a time when violent crime was surging.
Following her death, many celebrities and public figures, including Oprah Winfrey and former President Bill Clinton, reflected on her life and philanthropic activities.
Avant's daughter, Nicole, is married to Ted Sarandos, Netflix co-CEO and chief content officer, and served as a U.S. ambassador to the Bahamas during the Obama administration. Fox News has reached out to the familys' spokesperson.