Man gets 30 years to life in prison for killing his wealthy father who’d cut his allowance

Thomas Gilbert Jr.
Thomas Gilbert Jr. is shown after a 2014 arrest on a misdemeanor charge in Southampton, N.Y. Gilbert, now 35, was sentenced Friday to 30 years to life in prison for killing his father.
(Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office)

A Princeton graduate was sentenced to 30 years to life behind bars in the Manhattan shooting death of his wealthy father after the young man’s allowance was slashed.

Thomas Gilbert Jr. was sentenced Friday by a New York Supreme Court judge three months after he was convicted of murdering his 70-year-old father at his parents’ home on Manhattan’s East Side.

Thomas Gilbert Sr. was fatally shot Jan. 4, 2015. The younger Gilbert showed up unannounced, angry that he lost his weekly allowance of $1,000. According to prosecutors, he spent the money on travel, memberships to elite sporting clubs and other personal expenses, but was not able to hold down a steady job.


His parents, who also covered his basic daily expenses, had been encouraging him to become more self-sufficient and incrementally reduced his monthly allowance.

The jury rejected the 35-year-old defendant’s insanity defense during the trial, deciding that he murdered the hedge fund manager with a shot to the head at close range from a semiautomatic pistol, a .40-caliber Glock purchased months earlier in Ohio. Before fleeing the apartment, Gilbert put the gun in his father’s hand to try to stage his death as a suicide, according to trial testimony.

Gilbert’s wife and his mother, Shelley, called police upon discovering the body.

“Thomas Gilbert Sr. was a beloved member of his family and business community when his own son murdered him in a coldblooded killing,” Manhattan Dist. Atty. Cyrus Vance Jr. said Friday in a statement. “But now, thanks to my office’s prosecutors, the defendant has finally been held accountable, and he will serve a life sentence for this unconscionable crime.”

The elder Gilbert was the founder and manager of Wainscott Capital Partners in New York.

His son also was convicted on charges of criminal possession of a weapon.