The adage “play stupid games, win stupid prizes” seems terribly appropriate for this story. According to several news sources a Minnesota woman shot her boyfriend while filming a new video for a YouTube video. The young couple were allegedly in love with one another and the shooting was not a result of an argument. Rather, the couple were attempting a dangerous stunt in order to grow their fledgling YouTube channel.
The 19 year old Monalisa Perez was charged with second degree manslaughter after shooting her boyfriend on Tuesday, June 27th. The boyfriend, 22 year old Pedro Ruiz III, died on the scene of a single gunshot wound to the chest. The two were trying to grow their YouTube Channel, and had talked about wanting to become famous in the last video they posted, hours before the shooting occurred. According to Perez, who is seven months pregnant with Ruiz’s child, she didn’t come up with the idea.
Me and Pedro are probably going to shoot one of the most dangerous videos ever😳😳 HIS idea not MINE🙈
— Monalisa Perez (@MonalisaPerez5) June 26, 2017
Perez and Ruiz had planned to film a short YouTube stunt of her shooting a book he was holding with a gold .50 cal Desert Eagle. Ruiz assured her that the book would stop the bullet, showing her a book he had previously shot that had stopped the bullet. According to a family member, Ruiz had sent a Snapchat showing him shooting a bookshelf full of encyclopedias to see how many the bullet would travel through. Seeing the bullet be stopped by the first book, he concocted a plan to hold the book in front of his chest while his pregnant girlfriend shot it. Unfortunately, he learned that one book being held up is different that a stack of books lined up together.
“He had told me about an idea. I said, don’t do it, don’t do it. Why are you going to use a gun? Why? Because, we want more viewers,” Ruiz’s aunt told reporters, “I don’t know why they thought the book was supposed to stop the bullet.” The aunt added, “They were in love. They loved each other. It was just a prank gone wrong. It shouldn’t of happened like this. It shouldn’t have happened at all.”
Perez was released on conditional bail of $7,000. She is due back in court on July 5th. Until that time, Perez will have to wear a GPS monitor and have no access to firearms, as conditions of her bail. If charged with second degree manslaughter, Monalisa Perez could serve a sentence of over 10 years and be subject to a fine of not more that $20,000.
It should have to be stated, but please do not try stunts like this at home. The couple broke two of the most important rules of firearms: Never point the gun at anything you don’t intend to destroy and Be sure of your target and what is behind it. According to the NSSF, accidental firearm-related deaths are on a sharp decline, but by following proper gun safety protocol, we can continue to decrease needless deaths and injuries from improper handling. It may seem obvious to most of us, but no amount of YouTube fame is worth your life or that of a loved one. Stick to cute cats or fantastic (and safe) gun reviews.