MINNEAPOLIS — A Brainerd man received a 48-month prison sentence for his role in the arson fire last year at the Minneapolis Police Department’s Third Precinct building.
As part of his sentencing Wednesday, April 28, Dylan Shakespeare Robinson, 23, also was ordered to serve two years of supervised release and pay $12 million in restitution, the U.S. Department of Justice announced.
According to court documents, on the night of May 28, 2020, Robinson went to the Third Precinct where a crowd of hundreds had gathered following the murder of George Floyd. At one point, the crowd began shouting, “Burn it down, burn it down.” Soon after, a fence designed to keep trespassers out of the Third Precinct was torn down. Robinson, along with other co-conspirators, breached the fence and entered the building.
Robinson, assisted by an unidentified co-conspirator, lit an object held by the unidentified co-conspirator, who threw it toward the Third Precinct building with the intent it would start a fire or fuel an existing fire.
“On the night of May 28, 2020, Mr. Robinson chose to depart from lawful protest and instead engaged in violence and destruction. The arson at the Minneapolis Police Department’s Third Precinct put lives at risk and contributed to widespread lawlessness in Minneapolis,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Anders Folk in a news release. “With today’s sentence, Mr. Robinson is held accountable for his actions.”
“ATF is committed to investigating the civil unrest arsons of 2020 that occurred throughout the Twin Cities,” said Assistant Special Agent in Charge Jeff Reed, of the ATF St. Paul Field Division, in a news release. “Arson, being inherently violent, is a serious crime that put many of our community members at risk, and it cannot be tolerated.”
“The danger posed by the defendant in this case was very real,” said Michael Paul, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Minneapolis field office, in a news release. “Today’s sentencing sends a clear message — regardless of motivation, when someone is intent on conducting a violent act that breaks federal law, the FBI and our law enforcement partners will move assertively to hold them accountable. This type of behavior puts public servants and our entire community in danger, and we simply will not let it go unaddressed.”
On Dec. 15, 2020, Robinson pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit arson.
Co-conspirators Bryce Michael Williams, 27, Davon De-Andre Turner, 25, and Branden Michael Wolfe, 23, have all pleaded guilty to one count each of conspiracy to commit arson for their roles in the arson at the Third Precinct building. They will be sentenced at a later date.
This case was the result of an investigation conducted jointly by the ATF, the FBI, the Minneapolis Police Department and the Minnesota State Fire Marshal Division.
This case is being prosecuted by assistant U.S. attorneys Harry M. Jacobs and David P. Steinkamp.