Beverly Hills Police Chief Dave Snowden put to rest the growing theories regarding the Ronni Chasen murder case and declared that Harold Martin Smith, who killed himself with a handgun as Beverly Hills Police arrived at his Harvey Apartments in Los Angeles, was the lone gunman responsible for the murder of the veteran publicist.
According to “The Los Angeles Times,” the TV show “America’s Most Wanted” took credit for helping Beverly Hills Police solve the case when one of its viewers tipped them off about Smith bragging about the crime.
Recent ballistic reports confirmed that the gun Smith used to shoot himself in the head as police entered the lobby of the Harvey Apartments was also the gun used to shoot Chasen.
Veteran Hollywood publicist Ronni Chasen, 64, was gunned down Nov. 15 on her way home from a Monday night premiere and after party for the Sony musical "Burlesque" at the W Hotel in Hollywood.
At 12:28 a.m. Tuesday morning, residents of Whittier Drive heard gunshots and discovered Chsen's car crashed into a light pole at Sunset and Whittier. Chasen was pronounced dead at 1:30 a.m. at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center from multiple gunshot wounds.
Police said that Smith approached Chasen’s car on a bicycle in an attempt to rob her and that he acted alone.
“Regardless of what happened, this is a senseless murder,” said Vivian Mayer Siskind, a close friend of Chasen’s. “All of this is completely surreal and as each day goes by, and something new is discovered about this horrible crime, it just continues to get more unbelievable.”
Chasen started her showbiz career as a soap opera actress. She worked as a publicist at Rogers & Cowan in 1980 and became a top publicist at MGM. She became best known for her awards season campaigns and worked on numerous pictures including recent Best Picture Oscar winners "The Hurt Locker," "Slumdog Millionaire," and "No Country for Old Men."