LOS ANGELES — The owner of a Beverly Hills gun store said in an interview Tuesday that sales were booming after a series of violent crimes in the city, including the murder last month of Jacqueline Avant, the wife of a legendary music producer.
Russell Stuart, owner of Beverly Hills Guns, says ABC 7 that he has seen an increased interest in firearms from people from all walks of life.
“Guns and public safety is not a rich issue,” Stuart said. “We have seen an increase in watch thefts, car thefts, home invasions due to the crime climate in Beverly Hills and throughout the Greater Los Angeles area.”
The Hollywood Reporter also published an article that says some of LA’s wealthiest residents have taken new steps to protect themselves. Beverly Hills has seen a 25% increase in violent crime over the past 12 months, according to the report.
Aaron Jones, president of International Protective Security, told the magazine that Avant’s murder shocked many.
Avant was shot and killed in December at the home she shared with her husband, Clarence Avant. Police recovered an AR-15 rifle from this home which was allegedly used in the shooting. Aariel Maynor, who was on parole, has been charged. He pleaded not guilty.
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“I have a lot of regular VIPs; when people call, I call them,” he told the reporter. “We understand the urgency of what’s happening. It’s non-stop. People are looking for individual plans and cooperative plans, where we provide security for a cluster of homes in a neighborhood. Business has quadrupled.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report