Skip to main content

Father fatally shot by pregnant girlfriend in YouTube stunt 'gone wrong'

The couple were reportedly creating a video to gain YouTube notoriety.
  • Author:
  • Updated:

A young, Minnesota father was fatally shot by his pregnant girlfriend as they attempted to create a viral video – in front of their three-year-old daughter.

Pedro Ruiz III, 22, was holding up a book for his 19-year-old girlfriend MonaLisa Perez to shoot as they attempted to create a video for YouTube that they hoped would rack up views and gain them internet fame.

But as Valley News Live reports, Ruiz's girlfriend missed, instead hitting him in the chest at around 6:30 p.m. Monday. The bullet eventually killed him despite the best efforts of emergency responders who landed in Halstad, western Minnesota, via a medical helicopter.

Ruiz's aunt, Claudia Ruiz, told the TV station her nephew had given Perez a .50 caliber handgun and insisted she shoot the book, thinking it would stop the bullet. She said they'd already tested it out.

"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?'" she said. "Why? Because, we want more viewers."

The Forum News Service reports that the scene unfolded in front of the couple's three-year-old daughter, while Perez is currently seven months pregnant with their second child.

Family described Ruiz to the newspaper as "thrill-seeking," a man who loved cars and adventures, and whose pranks and YouTube stunts would range from the harmless – like putting baby powder on a powdered donut – to the potentially dangerous.

This video from Ruiz's Facebook page shows him head out in the middle of a thunderstorm on a ride-on mower, setting off bottle rockets from his hands.

Virginia Ramirez, describing herself on Facebook as Ruiz's big sister, paid tribute to him, saying: "I can't seem to accept the fact that ur gone Pedro Ruiz III. Another piece of my heart is gone. I will forever miss u baby brother."

The 20-year-old girlfriend has been arrested on suspicion of reckless discharge of a firearm, the Associated Press reports, and has since been charged with second degree manslaughter.

Next Up

Chet Holmgren

Thunder selects Chet Holmgren 2nd overall in NBA Draft

The Minneapolis native becomes the highest-drafted Minnesotan in NBA history.

Screen Shot 2022-06-23 at 2.21.45 PM

One airlifted after crash on rural Scott County highway

The State Patrol shut down Highway 282 in both directions Thursday afternoon.

Flickr - police lights squad siren - Edward Kimmel

Police investigating after two men found dead in Maple Grove

Few details are known about the investigation.

12-web-or-mls-12 Dining room

Gallery: Charming, Northeast Minneapolis Home is perfect for first-time homebuyers

Located in the Holland neighborhood, it's near the Eastside Co-op, tons of amazing restaurants, breweries, and a distillery

US-169 BUS, Shakopee, Minnesota - June 2019 (1)

Eden Prairie 19-year-old killed in crash near Valleyfair is ID'd

Alcohol is believed to be a factor in this crash, involving a 26-year-old driver from Hopkins.

Screen Shot 2022-06-23 at 12.35.25 PM

Man pleads guilty for threatening to kill Hennepin County employees

Peter Robert Berry has a criminal history dating back to the 1970s, according to court records.

Screen Shot 2020-01-02 at 7.54.07 AM

Fourth person sentenced for murder of Minneapolis realtor

Lyndon Wiggins is the fourth person that has been sentenced in the kidnapping and killing of Monique Baugh.


Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Thursday, June 23

The number of Minnesotans up to date on their vaccine has dropped, largely due to kids 6 months to 4 years now eligible in the data.


Man severely burned in house fire near Duluth

The burn victim was airlifted to Minneapolis for advanced care.


Woman, 29, dies in two-vehicle crash south of Mora

The crash occurred in Brunswick Township just after 1 p.m. Wednesday.


Video, transcript reveal moments that led to fatal YouTube stunt

Pedro Ruiz died last year attempting a YouTube stunt with a gun.

Mother's tribute to 'loving and smart' pregnant daughter killed in Eagan

A 23-year-old man has been arrested and is in police custody.

Suspect arrested in fatal shooting of Wisconsin sheriff's deputy

A sheriff's deputy is dead in western Wisconsin after being shot while responding to reports of a broken down vehicle.

Update: Wrong-way crash involved Chisago County commissioner

A 47-year-old woman allegedly driving the wrong way escaped with non-life threatening injuries.

Charges: Mpls. driver fled cops, fatally struck pregnant teen

Doctors reported that she had been about 12 weeks pregnant.

Cody "Loc" Pollard

Police say man who died on Father's Day was shot in Downtown, not Uptown

It means the Uptown shooting was not a fatal one, though 11 were injured.

Man shot dead in downtown Minneapolis, city's first homicide of 2017

Several shootings have been reported in downtown Minneapolis this weekend, and one of them was fatal.