RX Burn Boss Arrested

Heard about this earlier today and have since found some more information.

From Wildfire today:
“ A US Forest Service employee serving as the Burn Boss on a prescribed fire was arrested Wednesday October 19 after the fire escaped and burned approximately 18 acres of private land.”

Sheriffs release:

This is in an area with a decent amount of anti government sentiment. From the Oath Keepers 2014 standoff at Sugar Pine Mine, to the Hammonds 2006 Arson, set while knowing firefighters were asleep upslope, to the Malheur wildlife refuge occupation (2016) in protest of the Hammonds conviction.

Should be interesting to see how it develops.


Has the Forest Service released anything? Supporting the employee?

Not quite yet.

I wonder if it was a citizens arrest initially or the S.O. decided to make the arrest?

It sounds like maybe the quick arrest was a stunt to please the angry group of locals . There have been plenty of burns that have gotten out of control all over the nation and deputies don’t roll up and make arrests . Seems pretty strange to me .


I think the sheriff is very much aware of what happened at the malheur wildlife refuge and didn’t want a repeat. The arrest was just to passify the locals because to say many there don’t view the federal government very affectionately would be putting it very mildly.

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A previous sheriff of Grant County was a major figure in the Malheur Wildlife Refuge Occupation of 2016. Levoy Finnicum was shot as he and other occupiers traveled to Grant County for a public meeting on the sheriff’s invitation. Grant County sheriff viewed as 'security leak' as state seeks investigation - oregonlive.com
The DA from that time period is still in office.


Most likely a political stunt by a politician. Sheriffs are no better than some cook BOS… Could have been handled in a much different way.


It seems to be a rapidly progressing situation and the USFS has released a statement to their employees.

Updated at 12:20 p.m. PDT Oct. 21, 2022

Friday morning the Regional Forester of the Forest Service’s Pacific Northwest Region, Glenn Casamassa, sent the following email message to all USFS employees in the Region. (We removed the email addresses)

Forest Service Burn Boss arrested after prescribed fire escapes in Oregon – Wildfire Today


Based on his comments it seems like he’s got an axe to grind with the FS. And some serious accusations being launched by said sheriff.

“They may have been armed,” he said, “but we are not aware of that. There were definitely some landowners that were highly upset.”

“Determining the rest, honestly, Bill, is getting to the bottom of why they were even burning to begin with and why they chose to burn at that time,” the Sheriff said when we asked about the next step. “You know, there’s a lot more to this. Everybody knew it was a bad burn, should not be happening. Even the fire staff out there, there are fire personnel that were on scene that are afraid to say much because, you know, their jobs. It was not the right time to burn and there may have even been means taken to get that burn done that were outside the scope. That’s kind of where it’s at. You know, it’s a really tenuous situation and more details will come out.”


Be a burn boss they say looks good in your resume does it come with any extra pay no but you may end up with a bed and three meals a day maybe it is a pay raise after all


Mr District Attorney seems to want to escalate this situation, if I am reading that correctly.

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Seems like an aggressive over reach by the LE community in that area. If you followed the situation that was referenced above with the take over of the refuge, you are familiar with the anti government sentiment. The problem with this type of action and public statements from the sheriff is that people who exist on the borderline hear this as a call to arms. Extremely irresponsible of the sheriff, not surprising though. Very few of them that I have dealt with over the years( and there have been a lot) are decent people. Most are just looking to keep getting elected.


Looks like jimbo is up for re-election IBA couple weeks.


and Randy Moore came out swinging.


The burn boss has made a statement.



I am a fairly conservative individual, this is a place that even folks like me would steer clear of…I believe in accountability…ubetcha…But to arrest the burn boss while actively engaged with the incident is pure crazy…maybe the US DOJ will sue for putting fed folks in harms way…

If there is negligence on behalf of the RXB2 it will come out…And just maybe local and state officials have an obligation to represent there citizens when the feds lose a RX and cause damage to private land, all to often the fed’s investigate their own, and always the same outcome " We Did Everything (Nearly) Wright" There are a lot of private citizens in NM who are looking for answers right now…And I hope they get some…they deserve to know…
But to arrest someone is ridiculous, especially when that person is engaged in operations…I sure hope this is a one off, a fluke…an aberration.



An update, no charges filed, investigation “ongoing”.