Two Charged in Eagle Fire Arson

Fire topped $15 million in damages

By Lauren Steussy and Michael Gehlken
|  Friday, Aug 5, 2011  |  Updated 7:06 AM PDT
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Week of Work Exhausts Eagle Fire

Kevin Dack, Cal Fire VIP photographer

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Week of Work Exhausts Eagle Fire

The Eagle Fire near Warner Springs has burned more than 14,000 acres.
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Two men have been charged with arson in connection to last month’s Eagle Fire that burned about 14,000 acres on the Los Coyotes Indian Reservation and cost more than $15 million to fight, authorities said Thursday.

Jeremy Ortiz, 23, was arrested and booked into the Vista Detention Center on one count of arson to an inhabited structure or forestland.

Jesse Durbin, 23, who was already booked into same Vista center on unrelated charges, was also filed with the same charge.

The Eagle Fire started July 21 on Eagles Nest Road, east of Warner Springs, and took eight days to fully contain. Total cost to fight the blaze was estimated at $15.4 million.

Police determined that the cause of the fire was arson last week. The joint law enforcement investigation involved CAL FIRE Law Enforcement, Los Coyotes Tribal Police, the San Diego County Sheriff's Department and the District Attorney's Office.

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