Third Man Convicted For Starting Colby Fire

David S. Roberts via Wikimedia CommonsLegal defense is a right given to everyone who has a brush with the American justice system. Who exactly provides that defense, however, can make all the difference. The best attorney not only defends, but aggressively defends the rights and interests of the defendant. A trial should be about justice, not about retribution or revenge, and a skilled defense attorney helps make that possible.

A third man has been convicted in the accidental wildfire which spread to almost 2,000 acres in Colby. He and two others set an illegal campfire in the Glendora Hills, which started the conflagration.

The January 2014 fire destroyed five homes and damaged 17 others, and injured six people, five of them firefighters, according to the U.S. Forest Service. Ten outbuildings were also burned down.

This final defendant was facing four charges, but was only convicted of two: building an illegal campfire on federal land and causing trees, brush, and grass in the forest to burn without a permit. The former is counted a felony, and the latter a misdemeanor. He could be imprisoned for up to 5 1/2 years.

The co-defendant, both males in their early 20s, were found guilty of all counts and may face up to 6 1/2 years in prison when sentenced.

The three friends had been hiking on the Colby Trail when they decided to start a campfire outside of a legal campfire zone. Santa Ana winds blew embers from the fire into the brush, starting the fire. The men tried to put the fire out, but when they couldn’t, they fled the scene.

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