JOLIET, Ill. — A suburban Chicago man has been sentenced to 85 years in prison for the January 2011 murder of a 14-year-old boy who was playing video games in his home when he was shot to death.
Before Vernon McCormick of Lockport was sentenced Wednesday by Will County Circuit Judge Amy Bertani-Tomczak, he repeatedly proclaimed his innocence as he apologized to Deonte Lesley's family.
The 24-year-old McCormick was accused of spraying a home in unincorporated Will County with bullets, hitting Lesley in the head. He later died at Silver Cross Hospital in Joliet. The shooting also wounded then 16-year-old Jordan Edwards and 17-year-old Shadon McDonald.
When arrested on an unrelated parole violation, investigators said they believed McCormick acted alone and others living in the house, not Lesley, were the intended targets.