Monalisa Perez, 19, allegedly shot dead her boyfriend Pedro Ruiz III, 22, in the chest with a .50 caliber Desert Eagle piston on Monday in front of their three-year-old in a YouTube stunt gone wrong.
Perez and Ruiz had been dating for five years and were pregnant with their second child. The couple were trying to earn YouTube fame with the stunt that went horribly wrong.
Perez fled the house screaming and later said the book was supposed to stop the bullet to make a viral video, family members told the Star Tribune.
Prior to the shooting, Perez tweeted the following:
The couple’s plan was for Perez to fire the large-caliber handgun at a hardcover encyclopedia being held by Ruiz outside their home around 6:30 P.M.
Perez told police that she had fired the fatal shot while she stood just a foot away from Ruiz, the prosecutor said. She claimed Perez came up with the idea and showed her another book that had successfully stopped the bullet.
Perez then called 911 and EMTs attempted chest compressions on Ruiz, but were unable to save the young man.
Their three-year-old daughter, Aaliyah, was reportedly present when the shooting occurred.
Perez, who is pregnant with the couple’s second child, has been charged with second-degree manslaughter.
Online retailer Cabelas described the Desert Eagle as “one of the world’s most powerful semiautomatic handguns.”
A video by an unrelated YouTuber, ‘Tom Bulletsafe’ shows a .50 caliber Desert Eagle firing straight through 24 sheets of drywall.
Ruiz’s aunt, Claudia Ruiz, told WDAY-TV that she told her nephew “Don’t do it. Don’t do it. Why are you going to use a gun? Why?”
She said he replied: “Because we want more viewers. We want to get famous.”
The couple’s YouTube channel, which is based around video pranks, typically received between 400 and 900 views per video and had 218 subscribers.