Boles Fire suspect to stand trial

Dec 5, 2014 8:36 PM

The man accused of igniting the devastating Boles Fire in Weed will go to trial.
A Siskiyou County Judge ruled today there is enough evidence to send 24-year old Ronald Marshall to trial.

The fire on September 15th burned 150 homes and structures -- almost half the town.
After an almost two-day preliminary hearing, Marshall will answer to three felony arson counts.

24-year old Ronald Marshall was seen today inside a Siskiyou County courtroom, where a judge determined there is enough evidence to go forward with a criminal trial.

"Count one is arson of inhabited structures, count two is arson of other structures and forest land...count three is arson of property."

Today a Cal Fire deputy chief testified before the court saying his investigation turned up two possible causes --
One being arson using an incendiary device, although no ignition source was found -- the other -- not putting out a campfire properly, whether it was intentional or due to negligence.

The investigation also zeroed in on an "SOA" -- or a specific area of origin.
That area was the meadow side of a ponderosa pine tree near the Boles Creek apartment complex.

Three campfire rings were located in that "SOA".
According to the prosecution Marshall told Weed Police he started a campfire in the early hours of September 15th, but was adamant he put the fire out.
Video surveillance was taken from the Boles Creek apartment complex a week later, and according to police it showed Marshall at a bus stop near the origin of the fire, just an hour before it broke out.

The Siskiyou County District Attorney's Office says it has a list of motives for why Marshall started the fire.
Marshall was given an eviction notice from the Boles Creek apartment complex earlier this year -- his girlfriend was also a tenant of that complex, and was given the same notice on September second.
The manager of the apartment building testified in court Thursday saying she had reason to believe Marshall wanted to burn the complex down in retaliation.

"We have a statement from the defendant and witnesses, and the evidence points to Marshall's guilt in committing arson."

The District Attorney's office says it's going to review Marshall's charges based on the evidence presented in the preliminary hearing -- Marshall will be back in court for his arraignment on Tuesday, December 16th.


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