DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Northern District of Illinois

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, July 27, 2022
John R. Lausch, Jr.
, United States Attorney

Man Sentenced to Five Years in Federal Prison for Committing Arson During Civil Unrest in Rockford in 2020

ROCKFORD — A man has been sentenced to five years in federal prison for setting fire to a store in Rockford during a period of civil unrest in 2020.

SEAN CARDENAS, 22, of Rockford, pleaded guilty earlier this year to an arson charge.  Cardenas admitted that on May 30, 2020, he used a hammer to break the glass front doors of Burlington Coat Factory, 6260 E. State St.  Wearing a hood and mask to conceal his identity, Cardenas entered the store and used a Molotov cocktail to ignite a fire inside it.

In addition to the prison sentence, U.S. District Judge Iain D. Johnston on Tuesday ordered Cardenas to pay restitution of $965,591.

The sentencing was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; and Kristen de Tineo, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives.  The government was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica S Maveus.


Chicago Field Division