911 caller: Solon car crash shooter fired 'randomly' at first

Deborah Pearl (Courtesy: South East Harley-Davidson)
Deborah Pearl (Courtesy: South East Harley-Davidson)
Published: Aug. 27, 2016 at 1:33 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 28, 2016 at 12:35 AM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

SOLON, OH (WOIO) - A car and an SUV collided at the intersections of Solon and Richmond roads Saturday morning. Both drivers survived the collision, but moments later the car's driver was dead.

Police say she was shot by the driver of the SUV.

"There's a car flipped over in front of our house and another car on the corner," said Barbara Bartels during a desperate 911 call.

Bartels was reporting the accident in front of her house when she witnessed the driver of an SUV roll out of his flipped jeep with a rifle in hand, shooting.

"He was shooting randomly," said Bartels.

After a few shots that changed, according to Bartels. She told police he started to take aim at the driver of the other car.

"When our officers arrived they found a man with a rifle in the vicinity. He was taken into custody immediately" said Solon Police Lt. Bruce Felton.

Detectives from the Bureau of Criminal Investigation are trying to figure out exactly what happened. What police know at this point is a 29-year-old North Ridgeville was driving the jeep and failed to stop for the red light. He crashed into the Ford sedan driven by 53-year-old Deborah Pearl of Twinsburg.

Police found Pearl in the street, bleeding. She was rushed to a nearby hospital but died from her injuries.
"We heard about twelve shots," said Courtney Reese, who was in the vicinity at the time of the incident.
Reece was getting ready to have breakfast with her mom in her new apartment at that very corner.

"After the first shot I heard a woman scream out," said Michelle Reese.

Pearl's husband, who came to the scene, had plenty of tears and understandably few words. He told Reese and her daughter his wife was on her way to work when this happened -- about 7:30 a.m.
Pearl worked at the Original Harley Diner, where her co-workers and friends -- like her family -- are devastated and left with many questions.

"It was a senseless killing," said Bartels.

Police are not releasing the 29-year-old North Ridgeville man's identity until he makes his first court appearance.

Download the Cleveland 19 News app

Copyright 2016 WOIO. All rights reserved.