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Man pleads guilty in torching of Providence police cruiser

April 15, 2022 GMT

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Rhode Island man who according to authorities helped burn a Providence police cruiser during a night of vandalism in the summer of 2020 has pleaded guilty in federal court to conspiracy to commit arson.

In exchange for his guilty plea on Thursday, Nicholas Scaglione, 32, of Cranston, faces from 30 months to 46 months in prison at sentencing scheduled for July 14.

The cruiser was destroyed in the early morning hours of June 2, 2020 in what former Gov. Gina Raimondo called an “organized attack on the community” outside the Providence Place mall.

Authorities have said Scaglione was part of a “mob” bent on destruction that coincided with, but was separate from the nationwide protests over the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

Scaglione sprayed a flammable liquid into the cruiser, causing a small fire to intensify just moments after he and others unsuccessfully tried to flip the vehicle onto its side, the U.S. attorney’s office in Providence has said.

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He originally pleaded guilty in March 2021 to a charge of malicious attempt to damage or destroy a vehicle, but was recharged after a disagreement over his sentence.

A second man charged in the case been found incompetent.