A pregnant 19-year-old woman from Minnesota is facing jail time after she fatally shot her boyfriend. The reason? She was carrying out a dangerous prank in a desperate bid for YouTube stardom that wound up costing her everything.
MonaLisa Perez was charged with one count of second-degree manslaughter on Wednesday for the shooting death of her boyfriend, 22-year-old Pedro Ruiz III, the Star Tribune reported. Their 3-year-old daughter witnessed the tragedy as it unfolded.
According to the criminal complaint, the incident took place on Monday at around 6:30 pm outside their home in Halstad. The couple was testing whether a bullet fired from a .50-caliber gun would go through a hardcover encyclopedia, but Perez’s aim was so poor that she instead shot Ruiz in the chest.
Hours prior to the shooting, Perez took to Twitter to post an ominous warning about their imminent prank: “Me and Pedro are probably going to shoot one of the most dangerous videos ever. HIS idea not MINE,” she wrote, adding several lighthearted emojis.
“I wish they wouldn’t have done it. I wish he would’ve just done another prank,” Claudia Ruiz, the victim’s aunt, told WDAY-TV. “They were in love. It was just a prank gone wrong. It shouldn’t have happened like this. It shouldn’t have happened at all.”
Emergency medical personnel attempted to revive Ruiz by performing chest compressions outside the couple’s home before airlifting him to a nearby hospital, but he did not make it.
Perez was released from jail after posting a cash bond $7,000. She insisted to a sheriff’s deputy that it was Ruiz who suggested the video and set up two cameras to film the shooting, with one on the back of a parked car and another on a ladder.
Perez and Ruiz had been together for six years and were expecting another child in late September. He worked for BNSF Railway and was studying to be a foreman, said Ruiz’s aunt Lisa Primeau, who noted that her entire family is supporting Perez despite the tragedy.