A 20-year-old Coney Island man has been convicted of murder for shooting a teenager who was walking his dog on Christmas Eve, 2013, announced District Attorney Ken Thompson on Thursday, April 14.
According to trial testimony, Jerome Leslie of Neptune Avenue and West 32nd Street, went looking for the victim – 17-year-old Yaquin English – at his Bayview Avenue home. At around 7 p.m., English exited his building’s elevator with his pit-bull, at which time Leslie opened fire, striking the victim seven times. The dog also sustained a wound to the paw.
Evidence showed that, in the weeks leading up to the shooting, English had engaged in an argument on Facebook regarding his female cousin, who was romantically tied to Leslie. According to witness testimonies, Leslie had threatened to kill English during the online correspondence.
Leslie was arrested in February, 2014 and subsequently admitted his involvement in the shooting.
“This defendant escalated an online dispute into a deadly shooting,” said Thompson. “He took a life for no reason at all and will now pay for it dearly by spending many years in prison.”
Leslie – convicted Thursday of second-degree murder and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon – will be sentenced on Wednesday, May 4, at which time he faces a maximum sentence of 25 years to life in prison.