Santa Fe Police Department files first criminal charges against plaza obelisk vandals

On Wednesday, the Santa Fe Police Department (SFPD) announced that they set their first slew of criminal charges against rioters who toppled the obelisk in downtown Santa Fe on October 12, 2020.

33-year-old Lily Sage Schweitzer was charged with Criminal Damage to Property (over $1,000), Conspiracy, Unlawful Assembly, Criminal Trespass, and Resisting, Evading and/or Obstructing an Officer. 

29-year-old Ryan Witt was charged with Criminal Damage to Property (over $1,000), Conspiracy, Unauthorized Graffiti (over $1,000), Unlawful Assembly, Criminal Trespass, and Resisting, Evading and/or Obstructing an Officer.

According to the SFPD release, the Department is working together with the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office, New Mexico State Police, and the District Attorney’s Office to “identify, locate, and charge the individuals involved in this case in accordance with the judicial process.”

“At this time, several other individuals have been identified and will be facing charges for their involvement in the destruction of the Obelisk. A handful of others have also been contacted for questioning regarding their participation in the incident,” writes SFPD. 

“We would like to express our gratitude to the community for all of the tips and information we’ve received thus far. Thank you to the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office and New Mexico State Police for their assistance in helping us to identify those responsible,” said Police Chief Andrew Padilla.

Previously, Padilla said during a news conference with Mayor Alan Webber, “The monument, yes, it’s historical, but it’s an object.” He appears to now be taking the rioters’ destruction of property more seriously.

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