Editor's Note: This article contains graphic information about an extremely violent attack on Chicago pastor Timothy Johnson and his wife Renee.
A Chicago pastor and his wife who were beaten during an unprovoked assault by a man who chewed off chunks of their ears and gouged each of their eyes are now getting an outpouring of public support as they fight for their lives in a hospital.
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, 28-year-old Elijah Rule Hill Prince faces aggravated battery and attempted murder charges for his brutal assault on Pastor Timothy Johnson and his wife, Renee, on Saturday. He is undergoing a psychological evaluation in connection with his actions.
A fractured orbital bone, a slash on his head and several abrasions on his face were among the pastor's injuries. He is also missing part of his ear and has impaired vision due to his injuries from the attack. According to investigators, the pastor's wife is missing chunks of both ears, has two black eyes, bruises on her face and head, and lacerations.
Destinee Johnson, the couple's daughter, spoke out about the assault on her parents in a Facebook post, stating, "This is not a dream, this is not a movie, this is not an episode of a crime show — this is our life. I don't have the words to say, sometimes I don't have the strength, but the strength of my parents keeps me going. We do need your prayers. We need your love."
According to investigators quoted by the Chicago Sun-Times, Rule Hill Prince first assaulted the pastor when he was cleaning the alley behind his mother-in-law's South Side Chicago home in the 10500 block of South Emerald Avenue. Rule Hill Prince reportedly previously tried to sell Johnson something, but the pastor turned him down. Then, what happened next is what prompted the presiding judge, Judge John F. Lyke Jr., to describe the incident as "listening to a horror movie."
Rule Hill Prince allegedly choked the pastor and struck him in the head with a shovel he was using. He then punched the pastor in the head, gouged his eyes with his fingers, bit his ears and head, and then spat in the pastor's mouth. After this, he then shoved a three-inch piece of wood into the pastor's left eye.
Upon realizing what was happening to her husband, Renee reportedly then rushed to her husband's aid only to be attacked herself. According to The Christian Post, Rule Hill Prince allegedly grabbed Renee by the hair, gouged her eyes with his fingers, ripped off "large chunks" of her ears with his teeth and spit on her. Renee fell to the ground during the attack, at which point Rule Hill Prince reportedly kicked her several times.
Amid the attack, Pastor Johnson was somehow able to call 9-11.
According to the prosecutors, Rule Hill Prince then left the scene after a witness came outside and yelled at him.
Prosecutors said that pieces of the couple's ears were found in the alley but could not be reattached. They also noted that the block of wood thrusted into the pastor's eye was recovered at the crime scene.
Photo courtesy: ©Pexels/Kat Wilcox
John Paluska has been a contributor for Christian Headlines since 2016 and is the founder of The Washington Gazette, a news outlet he relaunched in 2019 as a response to the constant distribution of fake news.