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Gilbertson gets probation
‘Don’t blow it,’ judge tells Argyle teenager
gilbertson sentenced
Kyle Gilbertson was sentenced to three years on probation and 219 days in Jail June 17 in Lafayette County Circuit Court. - photo by By Kat Cisar

DARLINGTON — An Argyle 19-year-old who racked up six felony cases in less than a year has been sentenced to three years on probation and 219 days in jail.

Those 219 days will add up to one year for Kyle Lawrence Gilbertson when combined with the 146 days he’d already spent in jail on bond as of his sentencing June 17 in Lafayette County Circuit Court.

“Hopefully he’s going to show us for the 219 days that he can follow rules,” Lafayette County District Attorney Jenna Gill said. “Quite honestly he does not like to follow rules. I just don’t think he is taking this seriously at all. But we’re giving him a break today.”

Prison isn’t appropriate for Gilbertson, she said, “but he should know that’s up next” if he doesn’t follow the rules. His probation conditions include no drinking, no bars, no contact with five specific people and no contact with anyone younger than 18 except family. He’s assessed more than $2,500 in fines and fees.

He’s eligible to have the convictions expunged from his record under a state law that grants leniency to young offenders.

Gilbertson pleaded guilty to felony charges including multiple counts of bail jumping and intimidating a witness and misdemeanor charges including taking and driving a vehicle without consent and making threats by computer message to injure or harm. Other charges were dismissed as part of a plea deal.

In May 2019, Gilbertson reportedly approached several younger teens at a baseball game in Argyle and showed them explicit pictures of underage girls on his phone, then later texted one of the teens that he was going to beat them up and “shoot the school up” on graduation day, referring to Monroe High School.

In September, police found that he took a 2004 Buick LeSabre without permission and used it to pick up two students at Argyle High School and give them rides home. One of the students told police he bragged about having a “new whip.” He does not have a driver’s license.

In October, the students contacted police to report that Gilbertson had been threatening them with statements like “snitches get stitches” and “now you are going to get stitches,” along with obscenity-laced threats to members of their families.

He also had his probation revoked for convictions related to punching two Monroe 16-year-olds at the Green County fairgrounds in July 2019.

While in jail in recent months, Gill said, jail staff had to block numbers so Gilbertson couldn’t call people younger than 18. In retaliation, he wrote “nasty messages” to a Lafayette County detective.

Gilbertson appeared from the Lafayette County Jail for his sentencing hearing, which was held via video conference and streamed live to YouTube. As his defense attorney spoke, Gilbertson looked down and wiped his eyes with the hem of his jail scrubs.

“Kyle’s a 19-year-old young man. Some of this can be attributed to youthful rebellion,” said Adam Witt, the defense attorney. Witt described Gilbertson as “a capable person” who “is aware he needs to work on his impulsiveness.”

“He has something that a lot of people don’t. He has a supportive family,” including several aunts who have come to his court hearings, Witt said. “He has a good support network. He just needs to avail himself.”

When given a chance to speak, Gilbertson thanked his family for trying to help him, admitted he “made a lot of bad choices” and said sitting in jail has been “a harsh eye-opening situation but it’s definitely going to change my life.”

Judge Duane Jorgeson said he will be “incredibly frustrated” if Gilbertson is returned to court for breaking his probation rules.

“This is your chance. This is your opportunity. Don’t blow it,” he said before listing off the rules of probation. “No means no. ... And no mouthing off to the jailers because you did something wrong and they’re holding you accountable.”

Expungement is the “carrot” if Gilbertson complies, Jorgenson said.