Hollywood publicist Ronni Chasen was murdered in the early hours of Tuesday in Beverly Hills, RadarOnline.com reports. Chasen, 64, was shot while driving her Mercedes-Benz, crashing into a pole. She was pronounced dead at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.
An employee at Ronni’s PR and marketing firm, Chasen and Co., told Radar police confirmed her death. The LA Times verified the information with the LA County coroner’s office, adding that police are searching for the shooter.
Chasen represented ‘Inception’ composer Hans Zimmer, producers Dick Zanuck and Irwin Winkler, and actress Natalie Wood, who died in 1981. Films like ‘Lolita’ and ‘Driving Miss Daisy’ were on Chasen’s resume. She became MGM’s senior vice president of worldwide publicity in 1993.
Police told The Hollywood Reporter:
“On Nov. 16th 2010 at approximately 12:28AM Beverly Hills police officers received info regarding shots that were heard in the area of Sunset and Whittier, shortly after a collision was reported in the same area. Units arrived and discovered a newer black Mercedes Benz E-350 involved in a solo crash to the light pole. The lone female occupant was located in the vehicle with apparent multiple gunshot wounds to her chest. Beverly Hills paramedics transported the victim to a local hospital where she was later pronounced deceased. The investigation is in the preliminary stages and no further information is available at this time. At this time there is no suspect, info or motive for this crime.”
Howard Bragman, a fellow Hollywood publicist who worked with Chasen, told the LA Times: “She had been doing this forever. She had a lot of class, a lot of style and a lot of intelligence. She was just very very well-respected.”
Radar writes that Chasen was an active community member who spent time with Women in Film and Big Sisters of Los Angeles.