Suspect arrested on arson charges related to more than 41,000 acre Spring Creek wildfire
The Denver Post
As at least a dozen wildfires scorched Colorado’s forests Saturday — forcing evacuations, consuming homes and closing roads — a 52-year-old man was arrested on arson charges in connection with one of the worst blazes.
The Spring Creek fire, burning east of Fort Garland in Costilla and Huerfano counties, has grown by more than 8,000 acres, reaching 41,292 acres as of Saturday evening, according to the Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team. The wildfire has destroyed an undetermined number of homes.
Jesper Joergensen was arrested on arson charges, officials confirmed at a 1 p.m. community meeting. The ongoing fire investigation is led by the Costilla County Sheriff’s Office, which is receiving help from the Colorado Bureau of Investigations, state arson investigators, Colorado State Patrol, and agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
A Costilla County detention officer told Reuters News Service that Joergensen, who is not a U.S. citizen, was to be handed over to ICE. The officer could not immediately state Jorgensen’s nationality.
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The valley’s commercial and residential property markets are similar in some ways — availability is tight and nothing is what you’d call “cheap.”