Deborah Pearl, a 53-year-old African-American mother, was brutally shot down in an incident that defies explanation.
Pearl, a resident of Twinsberg, Ohio, was on her way to work and was crossing the intersection at Solon and Richmond, when 29-year-old Matthew Ryan Desha reportedly ran a red light and hit her Ford Taurus with his Jeep.
The collision sent Desha’s Jeep flipping many times while Pearl’s car was shoved into the intersection. As the woman got out of the car to inspect the damage to the vehicle, Desha came out of his Jeep with a 5.56mm high-powered assault rifle. Seeing the weapon, Pearl quickly put her hands up but that was not enough to deter Desha, who inexplicably opened fire on the unarmed woman.
A witness called 911 claiming Pearl was shot 12 times. When the police arrived at the scene, they saw the woman lying on the ground bleeding to death. Desha was found near the site and was arrested. He is now being charged with murder and is remanded for $1 million bond.
But the question remains why the man shot Pearl — just because he had a gun? Would he have been as quick to shoot if Pearl were a white woman?
The shooting incident comes two months after police charged Desha with one felony count of carrying a concealed weapon and one misdemeanor account of possession of drug paraphernalia. A search of the man’s car recovered a 9mm handgun, three additional magazines, straws with suspected drug residue and other contraband.
Desha was also accused of fleeing a scene of drunken driving crash that he caused in 2007.
Although Desha was arrested on felony charges recently, the incident did not seem to teach him a lesson or keep him unarmed. Instead, he walked free just in time to take a life of an innocent person.
The senseless violence of the case reminds one of the killing of Kouren-Rodney Bernard Thomas, who was shot dead for walking out on the street at night. Chad Copley, a white man, said he was going to “secure his neighborhood” just because he caught sight of Thomas strolling outside a house where he was supposed to be attending a party — and just because he had a gun on hand.
Pearl’s family was devastated at the news of her untimely demise but such senseless killings, particularly of the non-white community is becoming a norm — and nobody who has any authority is willing to resolve this injustice.
Photo Credit: Twitter/Shawn King