Arrest in City Hall Fire

Fire happened during violent Saturday night protest

Tom Puckett
June 01, 2020 - 11:20 am
City Hall Rioter
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Buffalo, NY (WBEN) Buffalo Police have a person in custody in connection with Saturday night's fire at City Hall during protests.

Prosecutors say 20 year old Courtland Renford was caught on video throwing something on fire into a broken window as protests became more violent at Niagara Square.

Renford was arraigned Monday afternoon on one count of Arson in the Third Degree, Class “C” felony, and Criminal Mischief in the Second Degree, Class “D” felony. He faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted on all charges.

Investigators sent out an alert with Renford’s picture in an attempt to identify him. After learning his identity, Buffalo Police Officers went to his residence where they met two females who gave consent to search the residence. Inside, Officers found Renford hiding behind clothes on the second floor. He was taken into custody. Officers also recovered the distinctive Chanel face mask Renford was wearing at the time of the alleged arson

“Having been charged by both federal and state authorities, the defendant—who, in the event of conviction, is facing a potential prison term equivalent to his age—should now have a pretty good sense of what not only the federal, state, and local law enforcement but an overwhelming majority of the community think of his conduct,” stated U.S. Attorney JP Kennedy. “While we will use the full authority of the government to protect peaceful and lawful protesters, we will use that same authority to seek out, apprehend, and bring to justice those engaged in lawlessness and criminality.”

Renford is charged with maliciously damaging or destroying, or attempting to damage or destroy, by means of a fire or an explosive, Buffalo City Hall, a building used in or affecting interstate commerce. The charge carries a mandatory minimum penalty of five years in prison, and a maximum of 20 years.

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