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Banning man arrested for Riverside, San Bernardino wildfire arsons

Steven Taylor Rutherford, 47, was arrested on suspicion of intentionally setting numerous fires throughout Riverside and San Bernardino counties. (California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection)

July 1, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
A Banning man was arrested Friday on suspicion of setting numerous wildfires in Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

Law enforcement personnel from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) arrested Steven Taylor Rutherford, 47, on Friday. He was booked on nine counts of arson at the Robert Presley Detention Center.

"This is the third arson arrest for CAL FIRE this week, and let it send a message to anyone considering committing this heinous act," said CAL FIRE Southern Region Chief Dale Hutchinson.

CAL FIRE officers arrested a couple from Madera County last week for allegedly starting dozens of wildfires in the community of Yosemite Lakes Park between Fresno and Yosemite National Park, CAL FIRE said.

This year conditions have been extremely dry and fire activity has been high statewide.

CAL FIRE is asking the public to remain vigilant and report anything or anyone that may be suspicious. Anyone with information about arson is urged to contact the CAL FIRE Arson Hotline at (800) 468-4408. Callers can remain anonymous.