A federal courtroom has rejected former Angels communications director Eric Kay’s attraction of his two prison convictions within the loss of life of Tyler Skaggs in a terse, four-page ruling that affirmed Kay’s guilt for supplying the fentanyl-laced oxycodone that killed the Angels pitcher in 2019.
Kay was once sentenced to 22 years in federal jail in October 2022. Skaggs died in his Southlake, Texas, resort room on July 1, 2019, after the 27-year-old took the medication provided to him through Kay. The Angels had been to start out a sequence in opposition to the Texas Rangers the following day.
Kay’s attraction contended that the proof at trial was once inadequate to maintain both conviction or to turn that the right kind venue for trial was once Texas. Kay additionally challenged the propriety of statements made through the prosecutor all through her remaining arguments.
The U.S. Court docket of Appeals for the 5th Circuit affirmed the convictions Wednesday, writing within the ruling that the proof would permit a cheap jury to conclude that Kay met together with his provider in California and received the tablets after Skaggs requested him to take action, that Kay gave the tablets to Skaggs in Texas, and that Skaggs died after drinking some of the tainted tablets. Two medical doctors testified at Kay’s trial that the fentanyl was once the reason for Skaggs’ loss of life.
The courtroom additionally rejected Kay’s statement that the prosecutor made flawed remarks all through remaining arguments through misstating proof, vouching for the credibility of presidency witnesses and individually attacking the protection
“The prosecutor didn’t individually assault protection recommend,” the courtroom said. “The challenged observation as an alternative centered the jury at the weaknesses within the protection’s case and emphasised Kay’s incapability to refute or undermine the inculpatory proof.
“In spite of everything, even supposing a observation might be construed because the prosecutor’s vouching for the credibility of the baseball gamers who testified that Kay offered them oxycodone, Kay does now not deny that he did actually distribute medication to these gamers.”
Former Angels gamers Matt Harvey, C.J. Cron, Mike Morin and Cameron Bedrosian testified at trial that Kay allotted 30-milligram oxycodone tablets nicknamed “blue boys” to them at Angel Stadium.
At Kay’s sentencing listening to a yr in the past, U.S. District Pass judgement on Terry R. Way stated he have been “dreading this present day” as a result of he felt the necessary minimal of two decades Kay confronted was once over the top. However the pass judgement on added two years to the full on account of disparaging telephone calls and emails through Kay that government intercepted after his conviction in February 2022.
Kay insulted Skaggs all through a recorded jailhouse name, telling his mom, “I am hoping other folks notice what a work of sh— he’s. Smartly, he’s useless, so f— ‘em.” He advised that his mom plant adverse tales concerning the Skaggs circle of relatives within the media and referred to as the circle of relatives “white trash.”
“All they see are greenback indicators,” he stated of the Skaggs circle of relatives. “They’ll get more cash with him useless than he was once taking part in as a result of he sucked.”
Kay additionally demeaned the jurors that convicted him, calling them “fats, sloppy, toothless and unemployed.”
Kay, 49, is serving his sentence on the Federal Correctional Establishment in Englewood, Colo. He’s scheduled for liberate in 2041.
Skaggs’ widow and fogeys have filed a wrongful-death lawsuit in opposition to the Angels, claiming the staff knew or will have to have recognized sufficient about Skaggs’ drug use to stop his loss of life. A tribulation firstly scheduled to start out in October has been postponed on account of pretrial motions relating proof.