Princeton Graduate, Who Killed Father After Allowance Was Reduced, Sentenced to 30 Years to Life
Thomas Gilbert Jr. reportedly killed his wealthy father after a dispute about his weekly allowance
A state judge in Manhattan sentenced Gilbert Jr., 34, to life in prison with a possibility of parole after 30 years, according to The New York Times.
Hedge fund founder Gilbert Sr., 70, was found dead in his New York City apartment in January 2015 after being shot in the head and the death was staged to look like a suicide. His son was charged with second-degree murder as well as weapons offenses and forgery-related offenses.
CNN reported Gilbert Jr., a Princeton University graduate, was convicted of second-degree murder in June after the jury rejected the defendant’s insanity defense. The jury also reportedly found him guilty on two counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree, and he was found not guilty of criminal possession of forgery devices.
“While nothing can undo the tragedy of Mr. Gilbert’s death, I hope that the resolution of this case helps his loved ones as they continue to heal from this devastating loss,” the prosecutor said in a statement on Friday, according to CNN.
In a victim impact statement, Shelley Gilbert, the victim’s wife, asked for Gilbert Jr. “to be given as light a sentence as possible.”
“As I’ve said many times in court, we’ve been trying to get Tommy into a hospital for 15 years,” she said, according to ABC News. “He’s too sick to be able to judge. He needs to be in a hospital, had he been so my husband would still be alive.”
CNN also reported that Shelley is planning on appealing the sentence.
Prosecutors said that Gilbert Sr. had cut his son’s weekly allowance — normally up to $1,000 — to $300 just hours before he was killed, according to multiple reports. At the time, Gilbert Jr. was unemployed.
“The defendant didn’t want to grow up and be an adult,” the lead prosecutor said, according to the Times. “When his father tried to push him along in that direction and cut his allowance, he threw the ultimate tantrum.”
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In 2015, one close friend of Gilbert Jr.’s told PEOPLE that he was “a very troubled man.”
“Tommy had everything you could ask for. An Ivy League education, a house in the Hamptons, memberships at exclusive clubs,” the friend said. “But that didn’t matter because he was mentally ill.”