GREEN COVE SPRINGS, Fla. -- A man was sentenced to life in prison in the 2010 murder of a house sitter in Oakleaf Plantation.
Derrell P. Emery, Jr., 20, was sentenced Monday to life in prison, with the eligibility of parole after 25 years for the first-degree murder of 33-year-old Leroy McDonald.
Emery was also sentenced to 25 years for his conviction of second-degree felony murder and 25 years in prison, with a 20 year minimum mandatory, for burglary of an occupied dwelling. The sentences run concurrently.
In November 2010, the Clay County Sheriff's Office received a 911 call about suspicious activity at an OakLeaf Plantation home. Leroy McDonald was inside the home at the time, house-sitting for a family member. As a Clay County deputy approached the home, the deputy heard gunshots coming from the closed garage. Suspects, Todd Bradshaw, who was armed with a Kel-Tec sub-machine gun, and Derrell Emery, then exited the garage. After refusing to comply with the officer's orders to drop the weapon, there was a gun battle between the deputy and the suspects. Bradshaw was killed. Emery, suffering from a leg wound, attempted to run but was caught by police.
McDonald was found inside the garage with several gunshot wounds. He was transported to the hospital where he later died. McDonald was the cousin of the homeowner and was watching the house while she was out of town.