An Arkansas man has been sentenced to 50 years in prison for killing trans teenager Brayla Stone in 2020, just three weeks after her 17th birthday.
Stone was found dead with a gunshot wound to the head inside a vehicle along a walking path in the Sherwood neighbourhood on 25 June, 2020. Trevone Hayse Miller, 20, was arrested a week later in connection to Stone's death and has been in jail since. Trevone pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in exchange for a 50-year prison sentence, as reported by the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.
Miller will not be eligible for parole until he has served 35 years, which includes the time he has already spent in custody.He had initially been charged with capital murder, which carries a sentence of either the death penalty or life in prison.
Miller Killed Stone Because Was Afraid He Would Be 'Perceived as Gay'
Prosecutors said Miller was in a sexual relationship with Stone and he killed her after she said she was going to make their relationship public. The court heard that Miller killed Stone in order to prevent people from learning about their relationship, a cover-up that stemmed from his fear of being perceived as gay for dating a trans girl.
After the murder, Miller reportedly revealed to his manager at his job that he had "f*cked up big time" and he "won't be back" at work "for a very long time, if ever."
Miller was previously implicated in another killing, that of a 17-year-old boy called Bryan Allen Thompson who was shot during a robbery in 2016. Miller and two other teens were charged with Thompson's death, and the capital murder charge against Miller was dropped after he agreed to testify against the others.
Stone Falsely Blamed for Her Own Death on Social Media
Stone's death sparked controversy last year after police, media and her family members deadnamed and called her a "boy" after her case gained grabbed headlines. She was also posthumously blamed for her own death as online media groups falsely suggested she misrepresented her identity and "hid" being trans from her murderer.
A social media user named @tapnseason also posted an image of $100 bills, proclaiming that he had been paid $5,000 to murder Stone just days after her death. That account has since been deleted. The social media post even led to a Change.org petition titled, Justice for Brayla Stone, which claimed Stone was killed by a transphobic man. The petition amassed more than 660,000 signatures.