Teen arrested on suspicion of starting Pointe Fire in Spring Valley

Posted at 11:48 AM, Sep 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-05 15:30:12-04

SPRING VALLEY, Calif. - A 17-year-old juvenile was arrested for the Aug. 17 brush fire in Spring Valley that threatened homes, caused evacuations, charred 25 acres of brush and lead to the injury of a firefighter.

The teen was not named, and the firefighter was bit by a snake and is recovering.

The fast-moving Pointe Fire broke out in the 2900 block of Pointe Parkway, north of the Sweetwater Reservoir and caused officials to set up an emergency evacuation center at Monte Vista High School to accommodate evacuees from the surrounding area, Cal Fire Capt. Kendal Bortisser said.

Cal Fire and San Diego County Fire Authority investigators in cooperation with San Diego County Sheriff's Bomb/Arson Unit, the San Diego Metro Arson Strike Team and the Juvenile Division of the San Diego County District Attorney's Office, arrested the juvenile Sunday on suspicion of arson.

The juvenile was taken into custody after investigators had conducted surveillance and served a search warrant.

The juvenile is believed to be responsible for starting the wildland fire and was being charged with one count of willfully and maliciously setting fire to forest land, Bortisser said.

"The fire threatened nearby structures and put the public at risk. A full firefighting response with multiple fire engine crews and aircraft battled the blaze," Bortisser said. "A firefighter was injured fighting the fire and a large number of residents were evacuated from their homes."

Ultimately, the Pointe fire destroyed 25 acres of brush covered lands located between homes on Pointe Parkway and residential parcels located adjacent to South Barcelona and Ledgeside Street, in Spring Valley.