A 53-year-old African American woman from Cleveland was killed on her way to work, but it was the manner in which she died that has caught national attention.
Deborah Pearl, an employee at a Harley Davidson Diner in Northeast Ohio was driving her Ford Taurus when it was hit by another vehicle Saturday morning, according to the New York Daily News. The driver of the other car — a white man named Matthew Ryan Desha who ran a red light at an intersection — slammed into Pearl’s car with his Jeep. The 29-year-old’s car flipped over several times and landed on its roof while Pearl’s car was pushed into the intersection.
Both consequently stepped out of their vehicles to assess the damage, only Desha was armed with a 5.56-millimeter high powered assault rifle. A witness told Cleveland.com a surprised Pearl raised her hands before Desha shot her several times.
A witness who called 911 reported hearing at least 12 shots but police have not released how many times Pearl was struck. She was found on the pavement bleeding from her wounds and police arrested Desha on the scene without incident.
The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner's Office revealed that Pearl died after paramedics took her to University Hospitals Bedford Medical Center. On Monday, Desha was charged with Pearl’s murder. No motive was immediately announced.
Desha has a criminal background. This past June he was charged with a felony count of carrying a concealed weapon and one misdemeanor count of possession of drug paraphernalia.
Pearl leaves behind a husband and several other family members.