Alina Sheykhet’s parents arrived at her home in Pittsburgh to take her on a family charity walk for breast cancer Sunday morning, but instead, they walked straight into a crime scene.
The University of Pittsburgh student was pronounced dead at the scene after police arrived around 9:00 A.M. They ruled her death a homicide.
Yan Sheykhet, Alina’s father, described his daughter as a bright girl who wanted to be a physical therapist. He was the one who found her covered in blood and bruises after forcing her bedroom door open when her roommates claimed she was still sleeping.
Police released a photo of Alina’s ex-boyfriend, Matthew Darby, who was just arrested in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina after a concerned citizen witnessed him tampering with the window of someone’s home. The Friday before the murder, Darby was in Indiana County for a rape charge.
According to the Associated Press, Alina had a restraining order against Darby after he was arrested on September 26 and charged with felony criminal trespass for allegedly breaking into her apartment. She wrote in her protection order that Darby climbed up the gutter and broke into a second-floor window because she left him and stopped answering his phone calls.
Alina’s best friend Paige Mackenzie O’Neil started a GoFundMe for the Sheykhet family to cover the funeral costs. She wrote, “No one ever expects this to happen to them. The amount of love people have for Alina is unreal… It’s the least I can do with how her family has treated me as one of their own since the start. Any donation helps, even if it’s a dollar. I love you so much Alina, I’ll always keep you forever in my heart.”
Rest in peace, Alina.