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Colby Fire: Suspects to face federal charges for Glendora blaze

From left: Clifford Eugene Henry, Jr., Jonathan Carl Jarrell and Steven Robert Aguirre are seen in mugshot photos released by police.
January 17, 2014 12:00:00 AM PST
The suspects arrested in connection with the Colby Fire will face federal charges, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney's office confirmed to Eyewitness News.

"We worked cooperatively with the U.S. Attorney's Office and ultimately decided that the case was best filed by their office since the fire began on federal land," Deputy District Attorney Sean Carney said in a statement.

According to a source involved in the investigation, the suspects will be charged with unlawfully causing timber to burn. They could be charged as early as Tuesday.

The three men have been identified as Clifford Eugene Henry, Jr., 22, of Glendora; Jonathan Carl Jarrell, 23, of Irwindale; and Steven Robert Aguirre, 21, homeless of the Los Angeles area.

The men claimed they were sitting around a camp fire when a breeze kicked up, sparking the wildfire. They were taken into custody by Glendora police on Thursday and booked for recklessly starting the blaze.

Glendora Police Chief Tim Staab described the men as "apologetic."

Two of the men were seen running away from the mountains when first responders arrived, and a third man was taken off the mountain by the U.S. Forest Service.

Police found marijuana and cigarettes in the backpacks of two of the men. None of the suspects have a criminal record in Los Angeles County.

Bail was raised from $20,000 to $500,000 for each of the men due to the seriousness of the crime, as well as the high cost of damaged property and resources to fight the fire, according to Glendora police.

The fire, which erupted Thursday morning in dry and windy conditions, destroyed five homes and forced thousands of residents to evacuate.


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