Two men have been sentenced to prison for arson during the Minneapolis riots of 2020.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Marc Bell Gonzales was sentenced to 37 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for conspiring to commit arson of a Minneapolis bank.
On May 28, 2020, Gonzales partook in the violent Minneapolis riots which followed George Floyd’s death.
The 30-year-old man from Wayzata admitted to pouring gasoline on a Wells Fargo building near the Minneapolis Police Department’s Fifth Precinct.
“Gonzales poured gasoline from a red plastic canister onto the Wells Fargo Bank property while the surrounding crowd chanted, ‘burn it down!’ Gonzales admitted that he acted with the intent to accelerate the burning of the Wells Fargo Bank building,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office explained.
A second man, Shador Tommie Cortez Jackson, was also sentenced for conspiring to burn Target Corporation’s headquarters building.
On August 26, 2020, Jackson broke into Target’s downtown headquarters following false reports of an officer-involved shooting.
“Jackson used a construction sign to break through the glass doors into the building. After breaching the doors and entering the building, Jackson intentionally set a fire on a counter inside the mailroom. Jackson also attempted to light a second fire in the mailroom on top of cardboard boxes using a lighter and a bottle of ignitable liquid,” a press release said.
The 24-year-old fled the scene in his Ford Explorer and was stopped by Richfield police, who had no knowledge of his prior activity, because his stereo was blaring at illegal volumes.
The officer who pulled Jackson over “saw, in plain view from his position outside the vehicle, multiple, open, alcohol bottles in the Explorer,” Alpha News reported.
The officer also discovered what appeared to be marijuana, a money counting machine, clothing, purses and belts, which had the security devices cut off but the tags still on.
The Richfield man faces 33 months in prison followed by two years of supervised release. Two others are facing charges for their involvement in the arson of Target’s headquarters. One of them, Leroy Lemonte Perry Williams, has pleaded guilty.
Three men were sentenced last month for their roles in the assault on the Minneapolis Police Department’s Third Precinct.