United States Attorney Erica H. MacDonald today announced the guilty plea of FORNANDOUS CORTEZ HENDERSON, 32, to one count of aiding and abetting arson. HENDERSON entered his plea today before Judge Susan Richard Nelson, in U.S. District Court, in St. Paul, Minnesota. HENDERSON’s sentencing hearing will be scheduled at a later date.
According to HENDERSON’s guilty plea and documents filed with the court, HENDERSON and GARRETT PATRICK ZIEGLER (co-defendant) constructed multiple Molotov cocktails. In the early morning hours of May 29, 2020, HENDERSON and the co-defendant went to the Dakota County Western Service Center (the ”WSC”) located at 14955 Galaxie Avenue in Apple Valley, Minnesota. The WSC houses state and local agencies and organizations, including Dakota County court facilities, as well as a U.S. Passport center. Using baseball bats, HENDERSON and the co-defendant broke multiple windows at the WSC and threw in multiple, lit Molotov cocktails. Some of these devices successfully ignited and caused fire damage to the WSC.
According to HENDERSON’s guilty plea and documents filed with the court, HENDERSON and the co-defendant also started and attempted to start other fires at the WSC by pouring ignitable liquids and throwing unlit Molotov cocktails in and around the broken windows, then attempting to start the fluids on fire.
This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Apple Valley Police Department, and the Dakota County Sheriff’s Office, with assistance from the Dakota County Attorney’s Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Alexander D. Chiquoine and Chelsea A. Walcker.
FORNANDOUS CORTEZ HENDERSON, 32
- Aiding and abetting arson, 1 count
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United States Attorney’s Office, District of Minnesota: (612) 664-5600
 The charges against co-defendant Garrett Patrick Ziegler are accusations, and he is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.