Derrick Blanton pleads guilty to second-degree murder for July 2019 shooting


On Oct. 4, Derrick Blanton, pleaded guilty to intentional second-degree murder for the shooting death of 37-year-old Gregory Hoskins on July 21, 2019, the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office announced Tuesday.

Blanton, 40, of Minneapolis, is set to receive 295 months in prison. His sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 10 at 10:00 a.m.

In February of this year, Blanton was sentenced to 103 months in prison after a jury found him guilty of first-degree manslaughter for fatally shooting 29-year-old Isiah Smith in August of 2019.

The 295 month sentence he faces for killing Hoskins will be served concurrently with the 103 month sentence he received in February.

According to the criminal complaint, on July 21, 2019, Minneapolis police went to 1509 Plymouth Ave. N. on the report of a shooting. Upon arrival, they found Hoskins on the ground by his home with multiple gunshot wounds in his chest area.

Officers spoke with multiple witnesses, the first, identified as Witness X, told them that they saw Hoskins walking up to his house with groceries when Blanton got out of his black Chrysler 300, ran up to the Hoskins and shot him, the complaint states.

Another witness described as Witness Y, shared with officers that they were sitting on the back steps with a friend who Hoskins stopped to chat with. It was then that Blanton ran up and shot Hoskins while he stood on the steps of his home, the complaint continues.

A final witness, known as Witness Z, informed police that Blanton came over to their house with clothes still affixed with tags, asked to take a bath, and that Witness Z dispose of Blanton’s clothing in a dumpster behind the apartment complex, the complaint states. Blanton told Witness Z that he got into a fight with another man and hit him over the head with a gun.

Surveillance from the scene obtained by police captured Blanton running towards Hoskins and firing his gun at him multiple times, and then leaving the area.

Witness Z’s apartment complex footage also showed Blanton arriving with clothing, and Witness Z throwing a black plastic bag into a dumpster, the complaint states. Witness Z told investigators that the bag that was thrown out did contain Blanton’s previously worn clothing and that Blanton typically drives a black Chrysler 300.

Criminal Complaint (PDF)