21-year-old Darius Raymond Stewart
A Baltimore man could face up to 20 years in prison for a fire he allegedly set at a city liquor store during last April’s unrest.
Federal and state agents on Sept. 24 charged 21-year-old Darius Raymond Stewart with setting the fire. He was arrested on September 28 on unrelated charges, and was due to appear in court on October 2.
The incident happened the night of April 27 at approximately 8:30 p.m. Federal officials said Stewart was caught on surveillance cameras setting multiple fires inside the store, which is located in the 2200 block of West North Avenue. They said that several witnesses were able to confirm that the man in the tape was indeed Stewart.
One person was seriously injured in the blaze. Another person was able to escape with minor injuries.
In a press release, federal agents painted the picture of the evening’s chaotic events, saying that two waves of looters attacked the store that night. The first group, who banged on the store with pipes and crowbars, were run off by other people in the neighborhood. The second group looted the store and attacked the owner, who was standing outside.
“There are recordings and other evidence of people looting businesses, starting fires and attacking innocent victims, and it is our duty to prosecute the perpetrators,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein. “Citizens need to know that the rule of law will be upheld, and criminals who destroy property and jeopardize lives will be held accountable.”