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Two 18-year-old campers arrested for allegedly starting 431 acre Yucca Valley fire


Two 18-year-old campers were arrested for allegedly starting a fire in Yucca Valley that grew to 431 acres.

The fire started near Elk Trail in Yucca Valley on Thursday and left the area covered in smoke, making it hard for some to breathe.

Several nearby homes and ranches were threatened, but fire crews were able to mitigate the threat in the evening.

According to the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department, arriving deputies were able to identify an area where they believe the fire started.

"While driving to that spot, deputies noticed a Toyota Prius driving away from the scene, and conducted a traffic stop," reads a news release by the Sheriff's Dept.

Deputies learned that the two subjects in the vehicle, an 18-year-old from Valley Center and an 18-year-old Carlsbad, were camping and ignited dry bush. The fire quickly spread and they were unable to control it.

The two subjects were arrested and booked into the Morongo Basin Jail where they are being held on $25,000 bail.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to call the Morongo Basin Sheriff’s Station at 760-366-4175.  Callers wishing to remain anonymous should contact the We-Tip Hotline at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463) or go to

As part of our station's policy, we do not publish a suspect's name or photo until they are officially charged by the District Attorney's office unless they are a continued threat to the community.

Stay with News Channel 3 for continuing updates.

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Jesus Reyes

Kristen Outlaw


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