Trial began this week in the stabbing death of a pregnant teen whose boyfriend allegedly killed her when she refused to have an abortion.
17-year-old Ryan Matthews is on trial for the murder of his 16-year-old pregnant girlfriend, Arrjiana Hill.
The girl’s younger brother found her murdered in her Texas home March of 2014.
According to the Houston Chronicle, Assistant Brazoria County District Attorney Travis Townsend told jurors he and fellow prosecutor Kurt Sistrunk would show that Matthews, 16 at the time, killed Hill at her family’s Pearland home during a tryst because he feared that his college and sports careers would be ruined if she gave birth.
According to Pearland, Texas police, Hill was pregnant with twins at the time of her death and a paternity analysis determined the Matthews was the father.
A local news report states that when Hill told Matthews that she missed her period he asked her if she “punched herself in the stomach.”
According to the police report at the time of the arrest, an examination of Matthews’ cellphone showed online searches relating to pregnancy, including how late a doctor could perform an abortion in Texas, how to cause a miscarriage and if having sex while pregnant is safe for the fetus.
Matthews texts Hill on Feb. 28, 2014, saying, “why risk our life’s education and my sports career?” by having a child.
He then urges her to have an abortion as one news outlet reports:
- On February 26, according to prosecutors, Hill found out through a home test that she was pregnant.
It was confirmed by doctors the next day.
Then, on February 28, Matthews texted Hill telling her to get an abortion saying, “…so it doesn’t **** up our lives.”
Then March 6, according to investigators, Hill told Matthews she was pregnant with twins.
Matthews responded, allegedly by text saying, “WTF? That’s not good news“, “I can’t belive this is **** – ing happing to me.”
March 21, the day Hill died Matthews texted her and urged her to meet him after school for a sexual encounter at her house.
The Houston Chronicle reports what happened next:
- Hill sends the last text she will ever write at 1:41 p.m., telling Matthews she is with a coach.
The couple leave school together at 1:56 p.m. Video surveillance shows he is wearing blue jeans, a blue shirt, tan leather shoes and a multicolored backpack.
At 2:02 p.m. a car driven by a friend arrives at the guardhouse of the gated Lakes at Country Place community carrying Matthews and Hill. They are dropped off at Hill’s parents house at 3203 E. Cedar Hollow.
At 2:09 p.m. Matthews does a search on his cell phone for “Can you smash a baby in the womb?” and “Can you squish your baby in the womb.”
There is no activity on Matthews phone for the next 34 minutes.
Matthews’ friend picks him up at 3:02 p.m.
Shortly after 4:22 p.m., Hill’s 13-year-old brother, Khistler, gets off a school bus and enters his home to find his parents’ room in shambles. He calls for his sister but gets no response, he testifies. Terrified, he calls his parents. His father discovers his daughter’s body in her room.
Matthews’ attorneys claim their client is innocent.
Matthews has been certified as an adult and has been charged with capital murder where he faces 40 years in prison if convicted.
Life Dynamics has documented the violence pregnant women can face when they refuse to submit to abortion. The report, entitled Under the Radar Violence in the Conflict over Abortion, tragically summarizes other cases like this one.