Fair Trial

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

One of two men sentenced to prison in the firebombing of the Douglas County district attorney's home more than two years ago received a fair trial.

That's the word from the Third District Court of Appeals, which rejected Harlan Schwartz's request for a new trial.

The 29-year-old Schwartz, of Duluth, Minnesota, was sentenced to 37 years in prison for arson and possession of a fire bomb. A Molotov cocktail was thrown through a living room window at the Superior home of District Attorney Daniel Blank.

The home suffered extensive damage in the February 2000 incident but no one was hurt.

The firebombing came as Blank was prosecuting Alejandro Rivera, the leader of the Imperial Gangsters, for murder.

Schwartz claimed he was coerced into driving the getaway car for the firebombing because Rivera threatened to kill him or his family.

The appeals court rejected his argument that he deserved a new trial because of inappropriate remarks a prosecutor made during the six-day trial.

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