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Police arrest Chico woman suspected of arson in Bidwell Park

Police arrested a Chico woman Wednesday morning for arson charges in Bidwell Park with the help of nearby citizens.

Posted: Sep 16, 2020 10:30 AM
Updated: Sep 16, 2020 12:00 PM

CHICO, Calif. – Police in Chico have arrested a woman suspected of starting fires, after officers say an alert citizen spotted her starting a fire near the One Mile Recreation area, Wednesday morning.

Around 6:37 a.m. Wednesday, a citizen reported a vegetation fire near Big Chico Creek in 1100 block of Bidwell Ave. The citizen reported that an unknown man walked by her and told her, “Michelle did it,” according to police. That fire was extinguished by the Chico Fire Department.

Another alert citizen reported a female starting fires in Lower Bidwell Park around 8:06 a.m. near the One Mile Recreation area, according to police. The citizen followed the suspected arsonist and kept dispatch updated with her location.

Chico police were able to locate the suspect, later identified as 34-year-old Michael Childers-Marchick, a short distance from where the fires started. However, police have not identified the witness to the first fire. Anyone with information or witnessed the starting of these fires is asked to call police at 530-897-4900.

The Chico Fire Department was able to extinguish the fires and keep them from spreading.

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Most of the forecast will remain pleasant and seasonable with big changes possible by next weekend.
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