Plymouth shoe sale gunman sentenced for fatally shooting teen

A Hennepin County judge sentenced Augustus Sirleaf in the fatal shooting of a teenager during a robbery set-up over an expensive pair of shoes. 

Sirleaf pleaded guilty in November to second-degree murder for his role in the death of 17-year-old Yaseen Johnson. Hennepin County Judge Daniel Moreno sentenced the 20-year-old on Tuesday to 276 months (23 years) in prison with credit for 411 days served. 

According to court records, Johnson and Sirleaf met on Nov. 14, 2022, outside a Plymouth apartment complex to discuss buying a pair of Balenciaga sneakers. However, Sirleaf tried to rob Johnson during the bogus sale. 

Sirleaf admitted in court that he pulled out his firearm, and when he saw a gun in Johnson’s waistband, he opened fire. Johnson never pulled out his weapon, but was killed.

Hennepin County prosecutors charged Sirleaf with two counts of second-degree murder, but the 20-year-old pleaded guilty to second-degree murder with intent in exchange for the other second-degree murder while committing a felony charge to be dropped. 

The terms of the plea agreement called for Sirleaf to receive a 23-year prison sentence, which is within state sentencing guidelines for the charge. But, Johnson’s family said that was not enough. 

"It is a life. You took a life. You do not deserve your freedom," Thelma Gaye, Johnson’s mother, previously told FOX 9’s Paul Blume during an interview. 

Hans Madave, 20, was also charged for his role in the crime and pleaded guilty to second-degree murder with intent. His sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 10, and under the terms of the plea agreement, he is expected to receive between 12.5 and 15 years behind bars.