A Maplewood man pleaded guilty Thursday to taking part in the burning of a St. Paul high school during the riots that followed the death of George Floyd last summer.

Mohamed Hussein Abdi, 20, appeared in Minnesota's U.S. District Court via Zoom to accept a plea deal of one count of conspiracy to commit arson.

On May 28, 2020, Abdi met a friend near the Gordon Parks High School, located at 1212 University Ave. W., and broke into the cafeteria, he told the court. Abdi and the co-conspirator agreed to light the building on fire. Abdi poured flammable accelerant on the floor, lit a trash can on fire and knocked it over toward the trail of flammable liquid. He left with a fire in the cafeteria still burning.

Abdi also threw rocks at police and broke out a window at Discount Tire, he said.

A sentencing date has not been scheduled. Abdi could face a maximum of five years in prison and will pay restitution to the school and tire shop.

Andy Mannix • 612-673-4036