The mystery surrounding heavy-hitting Hollywood publicist Ronni Chasen's murder is deepening.
Harold Smith, the man who committed suicide after police came to question him, may not have been involved in the crime. A Los Angeles TV station quotes sources as saying ballistic reports on Smith's weapon came up negative.
"There is an even chance that Harold Martin Smith has absolutely nothing to do with the Ronni Chasen murder," says Harvey Levin, executive producer of celebrity website TMZ.com.
The Beverly Hills police department is still calling him a person of interest, but Smith's claims to neighbors that he killed Chasen may have been a case of mouthing off or simply delusional, says CBS News Correspondent Ben Tracy.
"The Beverly Hills Police Department has been very tight-lipped," notes Deadline Hollywood report Allison Hope Weiner. "It's very hard to get information about the status of the investigation."
A veteran publicist well-known for working tirelessly to promote her celebrity clients, Chasen 64, was shot to death last month in her car around 12:30 a.m. Tuesday in Beverly Hills as she drove home from a party after attending the premiere of the new Cher and Christina Aguilera movie, "Burlesque."
There are reports Smith thought he was being arrested by police for unrelated burglaries. Tracy points out. It would have been a "third strike" offense for the 43 year old, who is said to have bragged to neighbors that we would die before being taken alive.
Neighbors confirmed to CBS News that Smith's suicide happened just moments after officers arrived
In an interview with The New York Times, Ronni Chasen's brother says Smith was deranged, and the killing was most likely the result of a traffic dispute-turned-violent.
"We are told Ronni Chasen had a temper," says TMZ''s Levin, "and that the cops believe road rage here is a possibility."
Beverly Hills police now describe the investigation into Chasen's death as wide open.