Yuba County Man Gets 19 Years to Life in Prison for Murder of 13-Year-Old Chance Leon
Above: Stock Image
Originally published by the Yuba County District Attorney’s Office:
“On Monday this week, Yuba County Judge Debra L. Givens sentenced 19-year-old Gabriel Aguayo to serve 19 years to life for the murder of 13-year-old Chance Leon. He received 15 years to life for second degree murder, and an additional 4 years for personal use of a firearm. The sentence was part of a plea agreement made with Aguayo in October.
The murder occurred shortly before midnight on July 6, 2023, at the Shasta Glen apartments in Linda. Yuba County Sheriff’s Department Deputy Daniel Pierce was nearby when he heard approximately five gunshots. Pierce arrived moments later and located Leon. Deputy Pierce and Sergeant Watson rendered first aid until fire personnel took over. Leon died on scene from injuries resulting from a single gunshot.
Yuba County Sheriff’s Sergeant Machuca and Detective Baumgardner led the investigation. Based on witness accounts and surveillance video, they determined that Leon and a friend encountered Aguayo in the parking lot of the complex. A specific motive for the shooting was never established, but several witnesses indicated there had been bad blood between Leon’s group of friends and Aguayo.
Surveillance video showed Leon and a friend running from Aguayo. The video, combined with witness statements and bullet impacts in the exterior walls of the complex, showed the boys fled as Aguayo fired multiple rounds in their direction. One of the rounds hit Leon, who then ran into a friend’s apartment and collapsed. Aguayo fled to the apartment of a relative, where he was taken into custody a few hours after the incident.
Deputies searched the area for Aguayo’s firearm for days. Detective Baumgardner eventually located the Glock 9mm pistol wrapped in a sock and buried under loose insulation in the attic of the apartment building where Aguayo was arrested.
Thank you to Detectives Baumgardner and Machuca for an excellent investigation. Finding the murder weapon, hidden in a sock and buried in insulation in an attic in July, is testimony to your dedication to solving crimes and protecting our community. Thank you to DDA Andrew Naylor for prosecuting the case.”