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Baltimore man sentenced to 5 years for arson during riots

A Baltimore man who pleaded guilty to setting fire to a liquor store during the riots that broke out in Baltimore following Freddie Gray’s funeral last year was sentenced Wednesday to five years in prison and three years of supervised release.

U.S. District Judge Marvin J. Garbis also ordered Darius Raymond Stewart to pay $378,500 in restitution to cover the approximate cost of repairing and restoring the building.

Surveillance footage showed Stewart starting three fires inside the store on West North Avenue at about 8:30 p.m. on April 27, 2015, and then gathering paper and cardboard from the street to feed the flames.

One of the liquor store’s owners suffered head trauma and ankle injuries as he escaped the burning building, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. A second victim was discovered unconscious in the building’s basement and was hospitalized for five days after suffering smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning.

“Surveillance cameras recorded Darius Stewart setting fire to a store with people inside, while other rioters viciously attacked the store owner,” U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein said in a release. “When the evidence proves that criminals destroyed property and jeopardized lives, they must be held accountable.”