Man accused of making Molotov cocktail during Austin protest faces federal charge

SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) – A Cedar Park man arrested during a protest in Austin last week for allegedly making a Molotov cocktail now faces a federal charge.  Twenty-five-year-old Cyril Laurence Lartigue is charged with possessing an unregistered destructive device.

The U.S. Attorney’s office says  cameras recorded Lartigue making a Molotov cocktail in a parking lot directly adjacent to the Austin Municipal Court entrance May 30,  but he was interrupted by Austin Police Department officers heading in his direction. Lartigue fled, leaving the device behind, but minutes later returned to retrieve it.

Cyril Laurence Lartigue allegedly retrieving Molotov cocktail during Austin protest May 30, 2020/Photo courtesy of U.S. Attorney’s office

Austin police located Lartigue inside a portable toilet where he had changed clothes.   Inside his backpack, officers found a bottle containing lighter fluid, cloth rags, a butane lighter and the clothes he was previously wearing.

Cyril Laurence Lartigue allegedly retrieving Molotov cocktail/Photo-Courtesy of U.S. Attorney’s Office

He’s in federal custody now, and if convicted, Lartigue faces up to ten years in federal prison.

“The constitutional line is clear. Speech and peaceful assembly are protected; violence is not,” said U.S. Attorney John Bash. “If you bring a
Molotov cocktail onto the streets of Austin, you can expect to go to federal prison.”

The ATF, Austin Police Department, Austin Fire Department, and the Texas Department of Public Safety are
investigating the case.

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