A lengthy prison sentence awaits a man who fatally shot another man in the forehead after an argument in an apartment near downtown Minneapolis, then stepped over the body and fled.

Darryll L. Wilkes, 27, pleaded guilty Friday in Hennepin County District Court to second-degree murder in connection with the Dec. 13 shooting of Gerald Buffett, 34, who had no permanent address, in a unit in the 1400 block of Portland Avenue S.

Wilkes is expected to be sentenced Monday to 20 years in prison. With credit for time served since his arrest, Wilkes will spend roughly the first 12¾ years of his term in prison and the balance on supervised release.

His criminal history in Minnesota includes convictions for first-degree robbery, theft, domestic assault and other crimes.

Buffett was one of several people in the apartment when he was shot. Wilkes fled the scene with his brother. Buffett died at HCMC a few days later.

A witness to the shooting told police that he and other homeless people were staying in the apartment while the renter was incarcerated. Kizito Majali said later that he and Buffett knew each other in Nigeria, and they moved to the United States as teens a few months apart in pursuit of a better life.

Paul Walsh