Woman gets 10-plus years in prison after online shooting threats

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — A Rochester woman is going to prison after allegedly making threats and displaying a gun over Facebook Live.

Gabygayl Cruz, 22, was sentenced to 130 months in prison — nearly 11 years — by U.S. District Judge Charles Siragusa. She was convicted of transmitting a threat in interstate commerce and possessing and discharging a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence.

According to U.S. Attorney Charles Moynihan, Cruz did the following things:

— On June 7, 2021, Cruz allegedly posted a video on Facebook Live, threatening to shoot a man and saying at the end, “Tune in in five minutes.”

— Later that night, Cruz and another person allegedly went to an area of Rochester where she knew the person she threatened spent time.

— Another Facebook Live video showed a black screen, but the sounds of 11 gunshots and Cruz running and giggling could be heard,.

— In a third video, Cruz allegedly recounted the earlier shooting, imitated shooting a gun, and continued to threaten others.

— Only July 1, 2021, she again allegedly used Facebook Live to threaten to shoot a woman, displaying a .45 caliber firearm. She then allegedly went to a Columbia Avenue address in Rochester to confront the woman, who wasn’t there. While leaving the area, Cruz allegedly struck a parked car and fired a shot in the air.

Cruz was arrested the next day when she was stopped driving a car in which officers found a loaded .45 caliber semiautomatic pistol, the same gun she displayed in one of the videos, according to Moynihan.

The Rochester Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigated.