Jury: Columbia teen tried to kill police officer


LANCASTER, Pa. (WHTM) – A Columbia man has been found guilty of trying to kill a police officer last year.

A jury in Lancaster County on Wednesday convicted 18-year-old Marquell Rentas on counts of attempted murder of a police officer, conspiracy, assault of a police officer, and reckless endangerment.

He was found not guilty regarding two other officers who said they were fired upon.

He will be sentenced after a background check is completed in a couple months. He remains in Lancaster County Prison on $2 million cash bail.

Rentas was 17 years old when prosecutors say he used a high-powered rifle to shoot at the officers from a second-floor window. The uniformed officers from Columbia, West Hempfield, and East Hempfield Township were in marked cars as they responded to a report of shots fired during the early hours of July 29, 2016.

No one was injured and no officers returned fire.

The officers testified they heard the shots and the bullets striking around them, and they said Rentas later admitted to shooting at them.

Rentas’ cousin, 19-year-old Trenton Nace, is scheduled for trial on the same charges next month. Authorities said he admitted to handing Rentas ammunition and recovering the spent shell casings.Get breaking news, weather and traffic on the go. Download our News App and our Weather App for your phone and tablet.

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