Two men will serve 35-year prison terms after admitting to their roles in the fatal shooting of a man at a north Minneapolis market one summer's evening last year.
Gregory D.O. Hamilton, 26, and Dantrell D. Johnson, 29, both of Minneapolis, each pleaded guilty Monday in Hennepin County District Court to second-degree intentional murder in connection with the shooting of 25-year-old Darryl R. Wells Jr., of Minneapolis, on Aug. 8, 2021, outside the Skyline Market in the 1800 block of N. Glenwood Avenue.
With credit for time in jail since their arrests, both men can expect to serve about 221⁄4 years in prison and the balance on supervised release.
Two co-defendants, both also from Minneapolis, are charged with first-degree premeditated murder and await separate trials early next year. Keon E. Pruitt, 20, remains jailed in lieu of $700,000 bail and has a trial scheduled for Feb. 21. William R. Johnson, 32, is jailed in lieu of $2 million bail and is scheduled to go on trial starting Jan. 9. The Johnsons are not related, the County Attorney's Office said.
The charges did not reveal a motive for the killing of Wells and said he had "no known gang affiliation" at the time of his death. However, the charges against the four pointed out that the killing of Wells was one of four shootings that occurred that day at known gang hangouts.
According to prosecutors:
Wells parked his vehicle in front of the market and went inside. William Johnson parked behind Wells' vehicle, which also was occupied by Dantrell Johnson and Hamilton. The two passengers went in the store.
Store surveillance showed the two approaching Wells. Dantrell Johnson fired semiautomatic guns from each hand, and Hamilton shot Wells with one gun. Both kept shooting at Wells as he fled outside.
A wounded Wells ran from the store and made slight contact with a stolen car being driven by Pruitt, all the while as Dantrell Johnson and Hamilton continued firing their weapons.
Wells ran and collapsed in an alley nearby. Pruitt drove into the alley, and two unnamed members of a street gang got out and fired several shots at Wells. He was declared dead about two hours later at HCMC.
All four defendants were located by law enforcement and arrested over roughly the next three weeks.