A Coney Island has been convicted of murder for the 2013 shooting of a teenager walking his dog on Christmas Eve, Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson announced Thursday.
Jerome Leslie, 20, faces a life sentence for the shooting, in which he allegedly ambushed his victim outside an apartment building across the street from Kaiser Park. His target, 17-year-old Yaquin English, was shot seven times when he returned home after walking his pitt bull. The dog received a bullet wound in the paw, according to authorities.
Prosecutors say the murder was the result of a weeks-long argument on Facebook related to Leslie’s relationship with English’s cousin. A witness testified Leslie threatened to kill English during their social media dispute, according to the DA’s office.
“This defendant escalated an online dispute into a deadly shooting. He took a life for no reason at all and will now pay for it dearly by spending many years in prison,” Thompson said in a press release announcing the conviction.
Leslie was arrested for the murder on February, 2014 and confessed to the shooting when he was questioned by detectives, according to prosecutors. The New York Post reports Leslie was already in jail for marijuana charges when cops connected him to the murder.
Leslie has been convicted of second-degree murder and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon and faces a maximum sentence of 25 years to life in prison, the DA says. He will be sentenced on May 4.