Bail For Accused Rioters In Lancaster, PA, Set At $1,000,000

(Kaylee Greenlee, Daily Caller News Foundation)

Shelby Talcott Senior White House Correspondent
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The bail for people arrested in relation to the Lancaster, Pennsylvania, rioting Sunday evening is set at $1,000,000, according to the Lancaster Bureau of Police.

Rioting began Sunday evening in Lancaster after police fatally shot Ricardo Munoz while responding to a domestic incident. Body camera footage released by the department shows Munoz bursting out of a home with a knife and chasing an officer before being shot.

Several buildings sustained damage and rioters threw “water bottles, glass bottles, rocks, bricks, gallon jugs liquid and parts of plastic road barricades at Officers,” police said.

Officers deployed tear gas and several arrests were made both Sunday and Monday in connection with the rioting, with bail set at $1,000,000. Some people arrested have not yet had bail set, according to a press release from the police department.

“That is not determined by us, that’s determined by the district justice that hears the case. We file the charges, they go for arraignment and then bail is set by the district justice, not by us,” Lieutenant Bill Hickey told the Daily Caller Tuesday morning.

A clerk for District Judge Bruce A. Roth told the Caller that Roth “was on day and night duty” and was responsible for arraigning those arrested Sunday and Monday. The clerk said the bail was set at $1,000,000 “because the police asked for it.”

“The police sent letters on each person and requested a high bail due to the multiple charges and the seriousness of everything,” the clerk said.

Hickey confirmed that police requested bail, but said it is ultimately determined by the judge.

“About the bail input, that’s simply – the affiant on the criminal complaint can attach, basically it’s just a letter that makes a request. But that, ultimately, is up to [the judge],” Hickey said. “We can request high bail, but the judge isn’t bound by that … We can request high bail in a situation where we think that there’s a risk to public safety, there’s going to be an ongoing issue. So we can ask for high bail, but ultimately it’s a request that the judge can throw that in the trash and say ‘well, that’s too bad.'”

The clerk was not able to say what factors Roth considered to be worth a $1,000,000 bail. A total of 12 adults and one juvenile were arrested in relation to Sunday’s riot, the police department press release indicates. Five of these “suspects were taken into custody during the afternoon and evening hours of September 14, 2020,” according to the press release.

Out of those arrested, 11 have been charged with: “Arson (F1), Institutional Vandalism (F3), Riot (F3), Failure to Disperse (M2), Obstructing Highways and Other Public Passages (M3), Disorderly Conduct (M3) and Defiant Trespass (M3).”

One male identified as Yoshua Dwayne Montague was also charged with “Firearms Not To Be Carried Without a License (F3),” the press release indicates.

The juvenile, a 16-year-old male, has been charged with: “Riot (F3), Disorderly Conduct (M3), Possessing Instruments of Crime (M1), Possession Small Amount Marijuana (M), Propulsion of Missles [sic] onto a Roadway (M2), Institutional Vandalism (M2).”

A small group of protesters gathered in front of the police station Monday evening. Though the scene was peaceful, some reported police “snatching” up individuals trying to walk home. Protesters said Monday that a 16-year-old male was among those taken by police, according to reporters on the ground. (RELATED: Lancaster Peaceful After Night Of Unrest Following Officer-Related Shooting)

“It was, I think the additional arrests we made yesterday [Monday] were in relation to the riot from Sunday night/Monday morning,” Hickey told the Caller. “We initially had only eight people that were in custody, but through the course of the day, in the afternoon/evening hours last night [Monday], we arrested five additional people in relation to that first incident.”

“I don’t believe we had any arrests from last night’s protests [Monday],” he added.

Hickey could not confirm whether officers were in unmarked vans, as one protester had alleged during Monday’s protest. Hickey added that they “don’t have unmarked vans.”