A St. Louis Park man received a 47-year prison sentence Tuesday in the Lakeville shooting death of a woman who was nine months pregnant with his child and the mother of his 2-year-old daughter.
Donte Rapheal McCray, 33, pleaded guilty in October to two counts of second-degree murder by drive-by shooting — one each for the deaths of 31-year-old Kyla Bianca O’Neal and Messiah Edward O’Neal, who was born by cesarean section the night of the shooting and died nine days later. His two original counts of second-degree intentional murder were dismissed at sentencing.
Donte Rapheal McCray (Courtesy of the Dakota County Sheriff’s Office)
The shooting happened about 7 p.m. Jan. 8 in the parking lot of the Amazon Fulfillment Center, where McCray worked.
McCray pleaded guilty through an agreement reached two days before prosecutors were to present the case to a grand jury for consideration of first-degree murder charges. A conviction would have carried a mandatory sentence of life in prison.
McCray agreed to be sentenced to consecutive prison sentences of 306 months and 261 months. Dakota County District Judge David Lutz handed down the sentence.
“Mr. McCray will now be held accountable for the senseless murder of both Kyla and Messiah,” Dakota County Attorney Kathy Keena said in a Wednesday statement. “I’d like to extend my sincere condolences to family, friends and loved ones of Kyla and Messiah.”
Surveillance video from Amazon lot
According to the charges, McCray and O’Neal had argued and fought earlier in the day after she learned he had a child with another woman while O’Neal was pregnant with his child.
Later, she agreed to pick up McCray at his mother’s house and drive him to work. Police say video surveillance from the parking lot shows McCray get out of O’Neal’s front passenger seat in front of the Amazon warehouse, then go to the back passenger side door and move something.
O’Neal pulled the car away from the front of the building while McCray ran alongside. She pulled into a parking spot, but reversed the car briefly, which pushed him backward. She then pulled forward slowly, then very quickly, hitting a parking spot post.
After reviewing the video, officers spoke with McCray again. He said that when O’Neal’s car backed up, he was hit by a door, and that made him angry and he shot her, according to the complaint. She died that night at the hospital of a gunshot wound to her neck.
Kyla Bianca O’Neal (Courtesy of GoFundMe)
O’Neal, of Minneapolis, left behind three other children, who were ages 10, 7 and 2. McCray is the father of the youngest child, court records show.
In May 2022, eight months before the shooting, McCray was convicted of carrying a pistol without a permit, a gross misdemeanor that made it illegal for him to possess a firearm. He was sentenced to 30 days in the workhouse, 30 days on home electronic monitoring and placed on two years of probation.
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