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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Northern District of Ohio
For Immediate Release
Michelle M. Baeppler, United States Attorney
Monday, November 7, 2022

Cleveland Man Sentenced to Prison for Setting Fire to Van During May 2020 Demonstrations and Unrest

CLEVELAND – A Cleveland man was sentenced today to 41 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Solomon Oliver, Jr. after he pleaded guilty to maliciously setting fire to a Cuyahoga County Department of Public Works van on May 30, 2020, during demonstrations and civil unrest in downtown Cleveland.

According to court documents, on May 30, 2020, Martino Jamel Andrews, 24, and others sought to vandalize and set fire to a van owned by the Cuyahoga County Division of Public Works near the Justice Center in downtown Cleveland following a demonstration to protest the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Court documents state that Andrews and others first vandalized the van by striking it with a baseball bat before using a rag to start a fire inside the van. Evidence in the record showed Andrews taking the burning rag, stuffing it into the vehicle’s fuel tank, watching the van erupt into flames, and posing for pictures near the burning wreckage. Court documents state that the vehicle ended up completely engulfed in flames, destroyed, and unsalvageable.

Investigators later identified Andrews thanks, in part, to tips received from the public after images and video were released to the media.

As part of the sentencing, Judge Oliver ordered Andrews to pay $3,721.88 in restitution to the Cuyahoga County Department of Public Works.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Cleveland Division of Police. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Adam J. Joines.

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