CORRECTION: City News Service has updated this story to correct the suspect’s last name to Michl, per police and booking records. (Nov. 30, 2023)
LOS ANGELES — Michael Latt, a film marketing consultant who worked on social justice campaigns with well-known people in Hollywood, was fatally shot by an intruder at his home in the Miracle Mile area of Los Angeles, and a homeless woman was behind bars Thursday in connection with the killing.
What You Need To Know
- Jameelah Elena Michl, 36, who police say lived in her car, was arrested at the scene of the shooting, according to the LAPD
- Michael Latt worked with Ava DuVernay, Barry Jenkins, Warner Bros. and Netflix on events and political initiatives
- Latt, a graduate of Chapman University, worked on marketing campaigns for "Fruitvale Station," Coogler's 2013 film about the killing of Oscar Grant by police in Oakland
- He also worked on marketing campaigns for "The Birth of a Nation," "If Beale Street Could Talk," "I Am Not Your Negro" and "Crazy Rich Asians"
Latt was the founder and CEO of Lead With Love and worked with filmmaker Ryan Coogler and musician/actor Common on various campaigns. The 33- year-old Latt was shot and killed at his home in the 900 block of Alandele Avenue around 6 p.m. Monday, police said.
The Los Angeles Police Department said he was taken by paramedics to a hospital where he died.
Jameelah Elena Michl, 36, who police say lived in her car, was arrested at the scene of the shooting, according to the LAPD.
She was charged Wednesday with murder and first-degree residential burglary with a person present, according to the District Attorney’s Office. The charges include an allegation that Michl personally used a handgun in the crime, and that another person was present during the commission of the burglary. She is scheduled to be arraigned Dec. 15 in downtown Los Angeles.
She remains jailed in lieu of $3 million bail.
According to the District Attorney’s Office, Michl targeted Latt “for being friends with a woman she had been stalking.” Prosecutors said Michl knocked on the door of Latt’s home, then forced her way inside when somebody opened it and shot Latt with a semi-automatic handgun.
No details on the stalking allegation were provided. The Los Angeles Times reported that a female film director — who was friends with Latt — sought and obtained a restraining order against Michl over the summer. According to court papers obtained by The Times, Michl worked as an extra on one of the director’s films, then stalked the director after filming concluded.
The director contended in the court papers that Michl began delivering disturbing letters to her home, including some that made comments suggesting she was prepared to shoot herself.
When the director’s film premiered at Sundance this year, Latt and the director were both in attendance, and he posted a photo of himself with her on Instagram congratulating her for the film’s success, The Times reported.
Following Latt’s death, Michelle Satter, Latt’s mother and the founding senior director of artists programs at the Sundance Institute, posted on social media her son had “devoted his career to supporting artists, championing organizations that raised up artists of color, and leveraged storytelling for enduring change.”
Others posted on social media about Latt and his contributions to social justice and humanitarian campaigns.
“I cannot even begin to express what we’ve lost with Michael Latt’s murder,” Franklin Leonard, the founder of Black List, posted on social media. “He was the absolute best of us. Rest in Power, my friend.”
Latt, a graduate of Chapman University, worked on marketing campaigns for “Fruitvale Station,” Coogler’s 2013 film about the killing of Oscar Grant by police in Oakland. Latt said in a 2019 Forbes profile it was a turning point in his career.
“Working on Ryan Coogler’s `Fruitvale Station’ opened my eyes up to how prevalent and insidious White supremacy is in our country and also showed me the potent power of storytelling to change hearts and minds,” he said.
Latt also worked on marketing campaigns for “The Birth of a Nation,” “If Beale Street Could Talk,” “I Am Not Your Negro” and “Crazy Rich Asians.”
Latt also worked with Ava DuVernay, Barry Jenkins, and Warner Bros. and Netflix on events and political initiatives.
In addition, he worked for Imagine Justice, a nonprofit founded by Common, which advocates for prison reform.
Latt served as a communications consultant for DuVernay’s ARRAY Now, and was marketing director for Blackout for Human Rights, a network of entertainment professionals founded by Coogler to speak out against killings by police.