A 17-year-old fatally shot a man, at an accomplice's urging, that he suspected of peddling counterfeit pills, murder charges say.
Jesse Duckett Jr. was charged Friday by juvenile petition in Ramsey County District Court with second-degree murder in connection with the Nov. 5 shooting of Donte Combs, 23, of Minneapolis. Combs died several hours later at Regions Hospital.
The charges come one day after 23-year-old Justyn T. Hosley of Inver Grove Heights was charged with two counts of aiding and abetting murder. Hosley, who has felony convictions for aggravated robbery, burglary and assault, remains jailed in lieu of $1 million bail. Court records do not list an attorney for either suspect.
According to the criminal complaint:
St. Paul police were called to the 400 block of Thomas Avenue around 10:20 p.m. on a report that someone had been shot. Officers found Combs facedown on the sidewalk with gunshot wounds to his back. He died shortly after having emergency surgery.
Investigators found two spent shell casings at the scene, believed to have been fired from the same gun.
Two female witnesses who arrived with the victim told police that Combs set up a meeting with Hosley to sell him some pills — possibly ecstasy. Another male, later identified as Duckett, walked up to join the men.
When Hosley asked Combs if the pills were fake, Combs insisted they were real. Hosley then said, "Pop him, he's trying to sell us fake [pills]!"
Combs ran around the car, but Duckett quickly pulled a handgun from his waist and shot Combs at least twice.
Hosley also instructed the teen to shoot the women, but they frantically drove away. Hosley "skipped off with the pills" while laughing, according to the charges.
The next day, a police investigator saw a Facebook posting on an account listed to Hosley that implicated the 17-year-old as the shooter.
When officers arrested Duckett, he was carrying a loaded handgun suspected of being the murder weapon. He denied killing Combs and asked for a lawyer.
Hosley told police that he wasn't with the teen during the shooting, claiming he was at home and that his court-imposed ankle bracelet would confirm his alibi. When shown the Facebook posting that implicated the 17-year-old, Hosley asked for an attorney.
Staff writer Paul Walsh contributed to this report.