A jury convicted Allen Scarsella on Feb. 1, 2017, of assault for opening fire and wounding five men demonstrating against the fatal shooting of a black man by Minneapolis police officers
Hennepin County Jail/AP
By Abigail Abrams
February 3, 2017

A jury on Wednesday convicted a Minnesota man of shooting five Black Lives Matter protesters in 2015, the Associated Press reports.

Allen Scarsella, of Bloomington, was found guilty of all charges, which ranged from assault to rioting. The 24-year-old was accused of shooting and injuring five black men who were protesting against the death of Jamar Clark, another black man who was killed by a police officer in 2015, according to AP.

Prosecutors argued that Scarsella’s shootings were racially motivated. He and three other men were arrested after the incident, according to WCCO, a local CBS affiliate.

A video from the night of the shootings showed Scarsella waiving a gun and making racially charged statements about the protesters, WCCO reported. Other evidence included text messages saying Scarsella wanted to shoot black people and a second video in which he said he was “on a mission” and “locked and loaded.”

His sentencing will take place March 10, and Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman told WCCO that Scarsella could face up to 19 years in prison.

“Mr. Scarsella’s conduct was truly outrageous,” Freeman said. “Racist language, his conduct is simply not acceptable.”

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