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November 15, 2013

Gay pleads guilty in Race Street shooting

RICHMOND — The accused shooter in an incident on Race Street last year pleaded guilty to second-degree assault Thursday in Madison Circuit Court.

Tony Ray Gay, 22, also pleaded guilty to being a convicted felon in possession of a handgun.

Assistant Common-wealth’s Attorney Jennifer Smith recommended Gay receive 10 years on the assault charge and five years for the handgun charge.

Gay originally was indicted on a charge of first-degree assault. Because of a prior felony conviction, he faced the possibility of 20 years to life in prison if convicted in the shooting.

During his change-of-plea hearing, Gay initially did not say he shot a man on Nov. 19, 2012.

“I had an altercation with (William) Damien Gross,” Gay said.

His attorney, Jim Baechtold, further elaborated, stating the two men had a “long-standing dispute.” Gay was inside a stopped vehicle that Gross approached, and Gay then shot Gross.

Baechtold said it was “unclear” if it was self-defense, but Gay fled the scene after the shooting and the gun was never recovered by police.

Gross was taken to the University of Kentucky Medical Center with an abdominal wound from which he recovered.

The incident was caught on security-camera footage from a nearby business, according to police reports.

Nicole Transeau, 20, also is charged as a co-conspirator to the shooting because she is believed to have been the driver of the vehicle in which Gay left the scene, according to Smith. Transeau has been offered a plea agreement, and her next pretrial hearing is 1:30 p.m. Dec. 12.

Gay also is scheduled for sentencing the same day.

Last week, Gay also pleaded guilty in another assault case. He, along with two other inmates, were accused of assaulting another prisoner at the Madison County Detention Center in July. The victim was taken to the University of Kentucky Medical Center for treatment of his injuries.

Gay pleaded guilty to first-degree wanton endangerment in the jail assault, and the prosecutor recommended he receive three years in prison.

Sarah Hogsed can be reached at shogsed@      richmondregister.com or 624-6694.

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