Trinity Gay’s mother is critical of sentences, case that didn’t reveal daughter’s killer
A Lexington man already serving prison time following a shooting that killed the daughter of local Olympian Tyson Gay will now be in a cell for substantially longer.
D’Vonta Middlebrooks, sentenced last year to 15 years in state prison following the 2016 shooting death of 15-year-old Trinity Gay, was sentenced Friday for a separate federal firearm charge.
Middlebrooks was handed another 115 months — 9 years, 7 months — over a 2018 firearm charge for which he was found guilty.
The federal charge came just two months before Middlebrooks was set to stand trial for his role in Trinity’s killing. During an August 2018 search of Middlebrooks’ home, a 9 mm handgun was found. Lexington police assisted state parole and probation officers in the search while Middlebrooks was out of jail on bond for other charges. He admitted to possessing the firearm and was arrested, according to court records.
He must serve at least 85 percent of his federal sentence — or a little more than eight years — and will be supervised by the U.S. Probation Office for three years after his release. He was going to be eligible for parole in 2021 for his October 2018 conviction in the Trinity Gay case, according to prison records.
Trinity, a track star at Lafayette High School, was shot in the lower neck while outside a car during an exchange of gunfire at Cook Out restaurant on South Broadway on Oct. 16, 2016.
Prosecutors were unable to definitively say who killed Trinity, and no one was charged with murder for firing the bullet that killed her.
Middlebrooks was convicted of wanton endangerment and being a persistent felony offender because he shot at a blue Ford Fusion when Trinity was killed. His attorney contended that someone in the car was shooting at Middlebrooks, but prosecutors said those shots were fired into the air.
Chazerae Taylor, who started a chain reaction of shooting that led to Trinity’s wounding and death, was found guilty of wanton murder and four counts of first-degree wanton endangerment.
His son, D’Markeo Taylor, was found guilty of first-degree wanton endangerment and Lamonte Williams was found guilty on five counts of first-degree wanton endangerment.
The four were sentenced after the trial in December. With his federal sentence added to the state prison sentence he received in December, Middlebrooks was put in prison longer than the 20 years Fayette Circuit Judge Ernesto Scorsone gave Chazerae Taylor. Williams and D’Markeo Taylor were given probated sentences.
The U.S. attorney’s office said the federal case against Middlebrooks was part of a crackdown aimed at using federal laws and longer federal sentences to get violent criminals off the streets of Kentucky communities.