Arrest on arson charges for California wildfire that scorched 157 homes

The Boles Fire destroyed trees, homes and other property in the Northern California town of Weed.

Story highlights

  • The Boles Fire scorched just over 500 acres over 5 days in Northern California
  • There were mass evacuations, more than 1,000 homes threatened at one point
  • A 24-year-old Weed, California, man is arrested, booked on three arson charges
A 24-year-old man was arrested Saturday in connection with a wildfire that destroyed more than 150 homes in Northern California, not far from the Oregon border.
Weed police announced that Ronald Beau Marshall had been booked into the Siskiyou County Jail on a three felony arson charges, including one of an inhabited structure or property.
Marshall's bail was set at $250,000, police said.
It all stems from the Boles Fire, a relatively small blaze in terms of total acreage but a very large one when it comes to total destruction.
The wildfire began September 15 and was put out five days later.
Shelley Besk, right, embraces her mother, Kathy Besk, as they stand in the burned-out ruins of their Weed home.
Yet it caused plenty of chaos and consternation in the meantime.
Just over 500 acres burned, and so did 157 homes and eight commercial buildings, according to Cal Fire. Another four homes and three buildings suffered damage.
There were fears that things could have gotten worse. The flames threatened about 1,000 homes and another 100 commercial buildings, spurring large-scale evacuations in Carrick and Weed, which is about 50 miles south of the Oregon border.
Authorities threw significant resources at the wildfire -- using over 1,000 firefighters, 100 engines, 28 bulldozers and five helicopters -- to bring the blaze under control.
As all this was going on, law enforcement was trying to figure out how it started. And throughout, according to Weed police, Marshall was "a person of interest."
Police presented the case to the Siskiyou County District Attorney's Office this week for review, and a judge later issued a warrant for his arrest.