Maine man arrested for wildland fire near Legacy Trail
Truckee police apprehend accidental arsonist
Truckee police arrested a Maine man Tuesday for starting a wildland fire on the Legacy Trail, west of the 267 Bypass Bridge, authorities said.
Tyler Richard Strout, 28, faces a felony charge of causing a fire. He remained jailed Wednesday afternoon under $10,000 in bond, reports state.
According to Truckee Police Sgt. Danny Renfrow, the police and Truckee Fire Protection District responded around 7 p.m. Tuesday to multiple reports of a vegetation fire along Legacy Trail near the Highway 267 overpass.
Renfrow said the responding officers were flagged down by a few witnesses who had noticed a camp nearby the fire. Witnesses noticed a man affiliated with the camp running from the source of the fire carrying his tent and guitar case.
Renfrow said the incident does not appear to be intentional.
“He said he was cooking food and fell asleep and the fire spread to the nearby vegetation,” Renfrow said. “That’s what ultimately woke him up — that fire was much larger than he originally set.”
According to Renfrow, the Tahoe Fire Protection District and an additional Cal Fire engine quickly handled the 50-by-50-foot fire between Legacy Trail and the Truckee River.
Division Chief Rod Brock said his team took additional time to survey the area and ensure the fire was completely out.
Renfrow said Strout was later identified based on a photo a witness snapped of him fleeing the area.
Stout was cooperative and admitted to starting the fire to keep warm and cook his food, Renfrow said.
“Strout confessed the fire got out of control, that he fell asleep, that he got scared and that’s why he ran,” Renfrow said.
“I can’t believe the fire took off the way it did with all the snow on the ground,“ he added.
Rebecca O’Neil is a staff writer with The Union. She can be reached at email@example.com.
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