QUEENS ANNE’S COUNTY, Md. (WJZ) — Queen Anne’s County officials announced that 2 men have pleaded guilty to a 2020 Molotov Cocktail Incident.

Edward C. Gaines III, 43, Office of State Fire Marshall

Edward C. Gaines III, 43, pleaded guilty to the Manufacturing and Possession of a Destructive Device, specifically a Molotov Cocktail, on May 27. He faces up to 25 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Gaines’s sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 16.

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Mardell Adkins, 37, pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Reckless Endangerment on June 7. He was sentenced to 5 years in prison with all but 126 days suspended followed by 2 years of supervised probation. Adkins agreed to be a state witness in the case in exchange for his plea deal.

The incident happened on Oct. 14, 2020, in the Chester Harbor community of Queen Anne’s County. Court documents said that Adkins dropped his phone at the scene.  Deputies were able to determine that the wallpaper picture on the cellphone was his girlfriend implicating him in the crime.

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Mardell Adkins, 37, Office of State Fire Marshall

Adkins later admitted to driving Gaines to the crime scene and witnessed him throw the device at a house. Officials were able to obtain surveillance video from Royal Farms that showed Gaines purchasing a drink, emptying the contents, and filling the bottle with gas.

Gaines then went to his ex-girlfriend’s house and threw the bottle attempting to start a fire. The occupants of the residence heard the commotion, saw the fire glow and immediately called authorities.

Gaines previously threatened to burn her house down. No one was injured during the incident.

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State’s Attorney Lance Richardson commended the Office of the State Fire Marshal for their excellent work investigating the case.

CBS Baltimore Staff