A former Los Angeles Angels employee was sentenced Tuesday to 22 years in prison for supplying Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs with the drugs that led to his overdose death in Texas.
Eric Kay, wearing an orange jumpsuit with handcuffs and leg shackles, did not react when Judge Terry R. Means read him the sentence. Kay faced at least 20 years in prison on one of the two counts.
There was no reaction from Skaggs’ widow and mother or members of Kay’s family, including one of his sons, who testified on his behalf, before the sentencing.
On Tuesday, Skaggs’ family released a statement.
“We are so grateful to everyone who worked so hard to investigate and prosecute Eric Kay. Today’s verdict is unrelated to the number of years the defendant received, the family said. The real issue in this case is to hold accountable those who distribute fentanyl, a deadly drug that kills tens of thousands of people and destroys families every year in our country. We will continue to fight to hold accountable those who allowed Kay to supply Tyler with the deadly drug. Without their actions, Tyler would still be with us today. »
Prosecutors presented evidence that Kay, 48, made derogatory comments about Skaggs, his family, prosecutors and jurors in phone calls and emails after the February sentencing.
There was emotional testimony from both sides in federal court in Fort Worth, about 25 miles from where the Angels were scheduled to begin a four-game series against the Rangers on July 1, 2019, the day Skaggs was found dead in a hotel room in suburban Dallas.
Kay was convicted of one count of drug distribution causing death and conspiracy.
The coroner’s report states that Skaggs, 27, choked on vomit and had a toxic mixture of alcohol, fentanyl and oxycodone in his system.
The lawsuit included testimony from five major leaguers who said they received oxycodone pills from Kay at various times between 2017 and 2019.