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California Wildfires 2014, Current Updates & Maps: Three Men Responsible for Colby Fire May Face Federal Charges

First Posted: Jan 20, 2014 07:30 AM EST
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As the last evacuation orders were lifted for the communities threatened by the Colby Fire in Southern California, the three men allegedly responsible for sparking the inferno remain in jail. Each is being held on half a million dollars bond, while they await a decision as to whether they will face federal charges for their actions.

According to a report from KTTV Los Angeles, Clifford Eugene Henry, Jr., 22, of Glendora, Jonathan Carl Jarrett, 23, of Irwindale and Steven Robert Aguirre, 21, a transient from the Los Angeles area, were arrested and are being held on suspicion of recklessly starting a fire.

The trio may be looking at federal charges for the crime because of the fact that the fire was started on land belonging to the United States Forest Service. As of Sunday the U.S. Attorney's Office told reporters that charges are pending.

The Colby Fire, which burned through 1,906 acres of land in the Glendora/Azusa area of the Angeles National Forest was ignited at approximately 6:00 a.m. PST on Thursday Jan. 16. According to the most recent update from InciWeb, as of Sunday evening the blaze was 78 percent contained.

Map: InciWeb

According to Nathan Judy, a representative for the U.S. Forest Service, although steep terrain in the area is making access to the fire and direct line construction difficult for firefighters, full containment is expected by Wednesday.

"Everything is fluid," Judy said. "We have to get boots all the way around the fire to call this thing completely out."

Fire officials say that the fire may move or spread and if it does, the projected potential spread within the next 12 hours will be to the west and north.

"This is only a projection," officials noted.

Southern California Incident Management Team 3 is managing the fire and is still under the Unified Command between the USDA Forest Service, Los Angeles County Fire Department, Los Angeles County Sherriff and Azusa Police Department.

The current Incident Commander for the Colby Fire is Mike Wakoski, who is heading up approximately 1,112 fire personnel still battling the blaze that led to the evacuation of thousands of local residents and the damage and destruction of 22 structures in the vicinity.

Photo: Twitter

Resources currently being utilized to battle this fire include 45 hand crews, 100 fire engines, three helicopters, five dozers, eight fixed wing aircraft and three heli-tankers. These resources include assets from all cooperators.

Due to the MLK Day holiday the Incident Information Center for the Angeles National Forest will be limited on Monday, Jan. 20 and operational only from approximately 8:00 a.m. PST until 12:00 p.m. PST. Regular business hours will resume for the center on Tuesday.


For the latest news & updates, follow reporter Bary Alyssa Johnson on Twitter: @MissBary

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