Rankin County Woman Receives 50-Year Sentence after Being Found Guilty of DUI Mayhem

For Immediate Release
March 2, 2009
For more information, please contact
Michael Guest at (601) 825-1472

Madison and Rankin Counties’ District Attorney Michael Guest announced today that Tonya Gann was found guilty of two counts of DUI Mayhem and received a 50 year sentence. Ten years will be suspended. The judge also ordered Gann to pay $500,000.00 in restitution to the victims.

The victims are a mother and daughter. Both of the mother’s legs were crushed during the car accident and she has gone through several surgeries. In addition, the four-year-old child now has a spinal cord injury and is confined to a wheelchair.

In March 2008, the Rankin County Sheriff’s Department responded to an emergency call regarding a two car accident that occurred on Shiloh Road around 8:00 a.m. Multiple eyewitnesses testified that they saw Tonya Gann driving the truck shortly before the accident or saw her behind the steering wheel immediately after the accident. DNA tests also showed that Gann was the driver of the vehicle. An accident reconstruction report found that the Ford F350 truck driven by Gann crossed the center line and hit the victims’ van.

There were three people inside the truck that struck the van and all three were heavily intoxicated. Numerous beer cans were scattered throughout the scene and also inside of the pickup that hit the van. Deputies also noticed that all three occupants of the truck smelled of alcohol and were unsteady on their feet.

Blood and urine tests confirmed that Gann was intoxicated at the time of the accident. These tests showed that Gann’s blood alcohol content was between .20 and .08 some three hours after the accident. Further testing showed that Gann also had cocaine in her system at the time of the accident.

Guest stated, “Tonya Gann and her friends partied all night long and then drove on our streets as parents were taking their children to school and people were going to work during the busiest hour on that Tuesday morning. Gann was a threat to everyone on the road that day.”

Guest added, “Tonya Gann showed no remorse throughout the trial. Even after a jury returned a verdict of guilty she never once apologized to the Trailkill family for all of the pain and suffering that she caused. Hopefully, the jury’s decision will help bring some closure to the Trailkill family.”

Gann has previously been convicted of Prescription Forgery in Hinds County in 2004.