High-Profile BLM Protestor Sentenced

A Black Lives Matter (BLM) demonstrator who set fire to Target headquarters during the group’s nationwide riots in 2020 has been sentenced to ten years in prison. Leroy Lemonte Perry Williams, from Minneapolis, took part in riots in the city after a rumor emerged online that police had shot and killed a black man. The false rumor prompted two days of BLM chaos in Minneapolis and resulted in damage to more than 70 buildings.

The rioting followed the suicide of a black man, wanted in connection with a homicide, who shot himself as police approached. Officers were forced to release video footage of the suicide when anger erupted following social media claims that police had shot Eddie Sole Jr. in cold blood.

Mr. Williams, a 37-year-old from Minneapolis, was charged with conspiracy to commit arson over the attack on Target Corporation’s headquarters in the Nicollet Mall. Surveillance footage showed Williams at several locations throughout the two days of rioting, including a Target Store, a gas station, and Target HQ.

Court documents state that Williams made repeated attempts to cause fires and that he rejected an initial plea deal on arson charges in January 2021. Initially accepting the agreement, he later withdrew and opted for a criminal trial last October. He was found guilty and will serve ten years in jail but three years of supervised release.

The Black Lives Matter riots broke out in May 2020 when serial criminal George Floyd died under the knee of a police officer in Minnesota. Officer Derek Chauvin was later convicted on murder charges.

Media reports in the wake of the rioting revealed that at least 19 people died, most of them black. Dozens of people were also injured, including rioters and police officers, there were more than 600 arrests, and an estimated $1 billion in property damage. It was the most costly period of criminal disorder in US history. The second is the Los Angeles riots in 1992, which cost around $775 million.