2nd man pleads guilty to fatal shooting during 2015 drug robbery in Aurora

SHARE 2nd man pleads guilty to fatal shooting during 2015 drug robbery in Aurora

Sun-Times file photo

A second man pleaded guilty to killing a 19-year-old man during a 2015 drug robbery in west suburban Aurora.

Keyonn S. Lovelace, 22, of Aurora, agreed to a 30-year prison sentence when he pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in the killing of Daniel Sanchez, according to the Kane County state’s attorney’s office. The plea was accepted by Kane County Circuit Judge Donald M. Tegeler, Jr.

Keyonn Lovelace | Aurora police

Keyonn Lovelace | Aurora police

On Nov. 7, 2015, Sanchez agreed to sell a small amount of marijuana to Lovelace and 24-year-old Leon Williams, prosecutors said. About noon, the three men met up and drove to the 600 block of South Elmwood Drive to complete the transaction.

While in the car, Williams tried to rob Sanchez of his drugs and cash, prosecutors said. When Sanchez got out of the car and tried to run away, Williams chased him down and fired two shots from a handgun that Lovelace gave to him. Williams then got back into the car and Lovelace drove off.

Officers responding to a call of shots fired found Sanchez with gunshot wounds to his head and leg, Aurora police said after the shooting.

He was taken to Mercy Medical Center in Aurora before being airlifted to Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital in Downers Grove, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

Detectives found surveillance video from neighboring businesses that linked Williams and Lovelace to the murder, police said. Lovelace was arrested and the handgun thought to be used in the murder was recovered from his home on Nov. 13. Williams was taken into custody the same day.

Leon Williams | Aurora police

Leon Williams | Aurora police

Lovelace admitted to driving Williams to rob Sanchez, prosecutors said. He also told investigators that he gave the gun to Williams before they got into his car.

Under state law, Lovelace must serve his full sentence, prosecutors said. He receives credit for 1,182 days served at the Kane County jail, where he has been held since he was taken into custody.

Williams, also of Aurora, pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in May and was sentenced to 55 years in prison, prosecutors said.

“Because this defendant unlawfully possessed a gun and provided it to his co-defendant, Daniel Sanchez is no longer with us,” Kane County State’s Attorney Joe McMahon said. “My office will continue to prioritize cases involving the unlawful possession and use of firearms.”

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