The Matthew Pyke Case: He Wrote His Killer’s Name In Blood Before Dying

Holly Alexis
3 min readAug 11, 2021

[Nottingham, UK]

20 year old Matthew Pyke was an easygoing guy that had one prominent interest: games on the computer.

While playing some of those games, he met his soon to be girlfriend Joanna Witton. After he graduated from university, the two moved in together so their relationship could blossom even more.

In 2006, Matthew and Joanna developed a major interest in a game called Advance Wars. They loved it so much that they created their own chat forum for it where players could discuss the game and new strategies. One user by the name of Eagle the Lightning spent hours upon hours on the forum. His real name was David Weiss. He was a 21 year old office worker living in Germany.

The conversations between the couple and David started out about the game, but ultimately shifted into more personal talks. This is when he developed a strong interest in Joanna. He added her on Facebook and started to message her over 100 times a day. In some of the messages, he presented the idea of visiting her in person. Joanna wasn’t too fond of the idea and knew he couldn’t find their address…until he did.

In June of 2008, Matthew and Joanna came home to find David standing on their doorstep. David explained that Joanna posted her address on Facebook, but she never remembered doing such a thing.

David arrived at the couple’s house without money or a hotel reservation. They felt sympathy for him so they allowed him to stay at their apartment. Over the three day stay, David hinted at Joanna for alone time and wrote her love notes begging her to leave Matthew. However, she never entertained any of these notes. David eventually went back to Germany after his failed attempts of stealing Joanna yet he still tried to flirt with her over the internet.

Two months after his initial visit, he showed back up at their apartment. This time Matthew and Joanna weren’t so welcoming to him. They told him to go away and blocked him on their social media platforms, including on the forum. David’s contact with them halted for another two months until September 18th, 2008.

Joanna returned to the apartment after working to find a blood trail leading into the living room. As she followed the trail, she stumbled upon Matthew’s lifeless body. He had been stabbed a total of 86 times. His ultimate cause of death was blood loss. Although Matthew lost so much blood, he used it to his advantage to help catch his killer. On the side of his gaming computer, he had written the letters DAV. Joanna told authorities that this could have meant David Weiss. On September 24th, 2008, police were able to extradite David back to the UK for intense questioning. It didn’t take long for him to admit to his doing, but he insisted it was self defense.

The 86 stab wounds didn’t tell a story of self defense. Instead, it suggested that it was a very personal attack over the fact he wanted Joanna and couldn’t have her. Just days before the attack David tried to message Matthew saying he had something he would like to give him. On that fatal day, he arrived at Matthew’s apartment with a concealed knife and thick gardening gloves on. When Matthew answered the door, the attack began immediately.

In May of 2009, he was sentenced to life in prison with a minimum of 18 years.



Holly Alexis

25. Sociology & Criminal Justice Major. True Crime Fanatic. Cheap Shopper. Writer. All articles are tossed together from the comfort of my couch.