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Lancaster man jailed for up to 9 years for role in 2020 riot outside police station

Christopher Vazquez pleaded guilty in March to several charges stemming from the riot, which occurred during protests of an officer-involved shooting.

LANCASTER, Pa. — Editor's note: The above video is from Sept. 14, 2020.

A Lancaster man will serve up to nine years in prison for his role in a riot that occurred during protests of the police-involved shooting of Ricardo Munoz in Sept. 2020, the Lancaster County District Attorney's Office said Thursday.

Christopher Vazquez, 33, pleaded guilty in March to two counts of rioting, two counts of reckless burning, two counts of disorderly conduct, four counts of institutional vandalism, and one count of failure to disperse for his role in the rioting that occurred followed Munoz's fatal shooting, prosecutors said. 

He was sentenced to a prison term of 52 months to nine years by Lancaster County Judge Margaret Miller last week.

During the riots, Vazquez threw bricks at a State Police vehicle, lit an umbrella on fire and put it in the vehicle, threw bricks at the Lancaster City Bureau of Police station’s front door, threw bricks at the front door of the Lancaster City Post Office, and threw bricks at a Lancaster Parking Authority vehicle. 

In total, Vazquez caused approximately $63,000 in damage himself, which he will owe in restitution, according to prosecutors.

During the sentencing hearing, it was revealed that Vazquez was on parole for a firearm violation when he committed these crimes and could serve additional time due to the parole violation, prosecutors said.

The officer who shot and killed Munoz on Sept. 13, 2020, did so after the Lancaster man charged the officer with a knife during a domestic disturbance.

District Attorney Heather Adams later ruled that the officer's actions were justified.

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