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Sep 3, 2015 12:32 PM

Keene Pumpkin Fest riots lead to jail time for former student


KEENE - A former Keene State College freshman will serve six months in jail, the longest jail sentence to date in connection with the Pumpkin Festival riots last fall.

According to the Keene Sentinel, Tory Knaff, 19, of Groton, Conn., asked to serve jail time upfront and not be on probation for two years, as two others have been sentenced thus far.

Knaff pleaded guilty earlier this week to a misdemeanor count of reckless conduct for throwing an empty glass beer bottle into a crowd of people partying on Winchester Court. He was previously indicted on two felony counts of reckless conduct, but those charges were dismissed as part of the plea deal.

He was sentenced to one year at the jail, with six months suspended. He must also undergo a substance abuse evaluation within 60 days of his release from jail.

Knaff was one of more than 100 people arrested in connection with the parties and riots that occurred on the outskirts of the Keene Pumpkin Festival and near the college.

“Tory is filled with regret for the conduct, the foolishness that he participated in last October when he was still 18," said Knaff's lawyer, Matthew E. Hill of the N.H. Public Defender's Office.

Three others involved in the riots have been sentenced previously. Jacob Clark, 20, of Chichester, and David E. Ywoskus, 24, of Merrimack were sentenced to serve a just a few days in jail, but will be on probation for two years, must perform community service and undergo substance abuse evaluations and/or treatment.

James A. Schaefer III, 19, of Center Moriches, N.Y., was sentenced to 360 days in jail, all deferred for one year, and suspended for another year, provided he completes community service and undergoes a substance abuse evaluation.


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