Last week, after Harold Smith was linked to her death, Beverly Hills police detectives said they suspected road rage not a murder-for-hire as reason for the kill. Now, TMZ reports road rage has been taken out of the equation and police believe Chasen’s murder was a random act of violence.
Harold Smith, the man wanted for questioning in the murder, shot himself after being confronted by detectives in a Hollywood hotel.
Sources cited by TMZ say the Beverly Hills PD is “confident” Smith was the shooter.
Police detectives have revealed that they are 60 to 70 % done with the investigation, but they have to complete additional interviews.
It was the TV show “America’s Most Wanted” that gave police officers a lead to follow as Smith had reportedly told one of his neighbors, Terri Gilpin, that he “offed her” and got $10,000 for it.
Law enforcement sources say there is no surveillance video capturing the shooting but the BHPD believes Smith was on a bicycle when he tried to rob Chasen.
Detectives also state that after Ronni Chasen was shot on Sunset Boulevard, she managed to turn left and drive hundreds of yards. Consequently, there may be witnesses who could have spotted Harold Smith on his bicycle.
In addition, TMZ has found that Harold Smith had been previously charged for violent robberies of women. On the night of January 20, 1998, Smith robbed two women, according to court records.
In one case, Smith stole a Walkman, headphones, and a cassette tape from a woman. In the other case, which took place an hour later, he made off with a woman’s purse. In both cases, Smith didn’t know the identity of the persons he attacked.
Smith pleaded guilty to both counts of robbery and served 11 years in prison.