Nine of the dozen adult protestors in Lancaster, Pennsylvania who were arrested on Monday have had their bail set at $1 million each, making it practically impossible for them to roam free.
The protesters were arrested by Lancaster police on Monday after they were caught staging riots. The protests, which started at around 3 a.m., led to serious clashes with police. The unrest eventually forced officers to fire tear gas into the crowd in an attempt to scatter them.
They were protesting the police shooting of a Lancaster man who attempted to attack officers with a knife on Sunday. The man, 27-year-old Ricardo Munoz, was reportedly suffering from a mental illness. Bodycam footage of the incident was later published online, showing how police gunned down Munoz outside his mother's house in downtown Lancaster.
Dozens of people marched to the scene of the shooting on Monday before making their way to the police station. Several of the protesters began throwing glass bottles, bricks, and rocks at the police responding to the gathering. At the end of the riots, officers were able to arrest a dozen people and one juvenile.
The arrested adults' ages ranged from 18 to 43. They all faced felony and criminal charges that included arson, criminal conspiracy, institutional vandalism, and rioting. The one minor who was arrested was charged with disorderly conduct, possession of marijuana, possession of instruments of crime and institutional vandalism.
Magisterial District Judge Bruce A. Roth set bail for nine of the 12 adult defendants at $1 million each. Court records showed that none of the nine defendants were able to post bail.
Social justice group Lancaster Stands Up mentioned in a tweet that the bail amounts were "absurdly high" and were no longer in "pursuit of justice." The group claimed that the judge's decision was "politically motivated" and an "attack" on their movement for police reform. The group stated that it has already contacted several elected officials, including Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf and Lancaster Mayor Danene Sorace, to help address the issue.