Man Sentenced 10 Years in Prison for Killing Former New York Jets Player

Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Killing Former New York Jets Player Joe McKnight

Joe McKnight
Joe McKnight in 2012, when he was with the New York Jets (Photo: Al Pereira/New York Jets/Getty Images)

Ronald Gasser, who killed former New York Jets football player Joe McKnight during a 2016 road-rage confrontation in Louisiana, has pleaded guilty to manslaughter, according to

He has been sentenced to 10 years in prison.

McKnight was gunned down by Gasser at a Terrytown intersection after a 5-mile rolling-road-rage confrontation. Gasser took the guilty plea before the Jan. 3 retrial.

Judge Ellen Kovach of the 24th Judicial District Court in the New Orleans suburb of Jefferson Parish gave the 10-year sentence Tuesday The Jefferson Parish District Attorney’s Office released a statement: “This plea brings finality to Mr. Gasser’s conviction for the killing of Joe McKnight on Dec. 1, 2016.”

Gasser, 61, was originally convicted of manslaughter in 2018, but the conviction was overturned two years ago by the U.S. Supreme Court. The 10-2 verdict was ruled unconstitutional because it was a split jury decision.

He was originally sentenced to 30 years in prison. Gasser was initially charged with second-degree murder, after being accused that he was the aggressor in the confrontation. The two men went back and forth yelling obscenities at each other while driving their vehicles side-by-side. At the intersection of Behrman Highway and Holmes Boulevard in Terrytown, Gasser, while still in his car, shot McKnight while the former football player stood at the passenger-side window of Gasser’s car.

Gasser’s attorneys said he acted in self-defense when he suggested that McKnight made an “aggressive” move through the passenger window. Yet prosecutors proved through forensic and ballistic evidence that McKnight wasn’t as close to Gasser as the shooter said he was.

Although he beat the murder charge, the jury convicted Gasser on a lesser charge of manslaughter.

At the time of his death, McKnight was 28 and a father of one. The running back was drafted in 2010 by the New York Jets. He also played for the Kansas City Chiefs.