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Press Release

Cannonball Man Sentenced for Arson

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of North Dakota

BISMARCK – U.S. Attorney Timothy Q. Purdon announced that on Sept. 30, 2013, Phoenix Martinez, 19, Cannonball, N.D., was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Daniel L. Hovland on a charge of arson. Martinez pleaded guilty to the charge on June 7, 2013.

Judge Hovland sentenced Martinez to three years and four months in federal prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release. Martinez was ordered to pay restitution of $354,100 and to pay a $100 special assessment to the Crime Victim’s Fund.

On July 25, 2012, Martinez set fire to the St. James Episcopal Church in Cannonball. The church building was a total loss.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Indian Affairs – Standing Rock Agency and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Gary Delorme prosecuted the case.

Updated January 29, 2015