Tribute: Hollywood Players Remember Ronni Chasen
'We are heartbroken, shocked and completely devastated,' said Amy Pascal, co-chairman of Sony Pictures.
Beverly Hills police said that at about 12:30 a.m., they received information regarding shots heard in the area of Sunset Boulevard and Whittier Drive. There, they found a black Mercedes-Benz E-350 involved in a solo crash.
"The lone female occupant was located in the vehicle with apparent multiple gunshot wounds to her chest," police said. Chasen was "in and out of consciousness, but breathing," according to RadarOnline.com.
A spokesman from the Beverly Hills police department late Tuesday added that search warrants have been issued as a matter of routine, a forensic examination of the car is under way and "our detectives are looking at all aspects of this crime." He said the investigation wass in its "infancy" and the police are not putting forward any theories regarding the murder at this time.
"It's an unusual incident for the City of Beverly Hills," he added.
"All of us in personal publicity are devastated by this tragic loss," publicist Kelly Bush said. "Ronni was a terrific publicist, blazing a trail for women in this business, like few others. I greatly admired and respected her."
"She was unbelievably conscientious and diligent, and she had an amazing sense of humor," Amanda Lundberg of 42West said. "She was very acerbic and truly funny ... She really created this incredible business for herself representing composers."
Producer Irwin Winkler, who knew and worked with Chasen for at least 30 years, said Chasen "was like family to us."
"She would be at our house for seder on Passover," he said. "I think a lot of her clients looked upon her as family. You couldn't say a bad word to her about anyone she was in business with, because they were all family to her. It wasn't like this guy is just another client -- it never was that way with her, never."
Survivors include her brother, writer-director Larry Cohen; his wife, Cynthia Cohen; nieces Melissa and Jill; and grandniece and grandnephew Alexis and Gabriel.
A funeral service will be held 11 a.m. Sunday at Hillside Memorial Park and Mortuary in Los Angeles.