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Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire

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avatar Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
May 01, 2015 12:27PM
Federal prosecutors have dropped charges against a Tuolumne County man accused of starting a massive 2013 wildfire that burned for more than two months and eventually charred more than 257,000 acres in the Stanislaus National Forest and Yosemite National Park.

http://www.fresnobee.com/2015/05/01/4504495_feds-dropping-charges-against.html?rh=1
Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
May 01, 2015 01:51PM
Man that just sucks!
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
May 01, 2015 02:12PM
Quote
hotrod4x5
Man that just sucks!

Maybe if they'd tried a little harder, they could have convicted him before the witnesses died.
The way the feds handled the case was ridiculous. By time this was going to trial everyone was likely to die of old age. WTF were they doing all that time? Someone needs to skewer those handling the case which many of us were very critical about for two years or whatever because they would not release information about what they were doing.

the perpetrator deserves some major pain regardless of what the court does



http://www.davidsenesac.com
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
May 01, 2015 05:42PM
Quote
DavidSenesac
the perpetrator deserves some major pain regardless of what the court does

Civil actions might provide some of that.
Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 04, 2015 03:02PM
Snippets from a December 2014 news article that for some reason was not accessible on the web in the past and I suspect that was because it was mugged by a court order to keep the public in the dark because it shows some incompetance the fire starter's lawyer began attacking. Adds information not made public before.

http://www.modbee.com/news/article4270446.html

Emerald, 32, of Columbia in Tuolumne County, was indicted in August. When the fire started, there were temporary restrictions in place prohibiting fires. He is charged with lying to a federal agent when he said he did not set the fire.

The criminal charges – setting the Rim fire, leaving it unattended, violating a fire restriction and making false statements to investigators – carry a maximum sentence of 11 years in prison and more than $500,000 in fines.
...
Bateman (Emerald's lawyer) said the information about Emerald recanting his admission was never recorded, but the interview two weeks earlier in which he admitted starting a fire had been, she said.
...
Rooney said the conversation was not recorded because Emerald recanted his admission during a telephone call Sept. 17 to set up a tour of the area where the fire started, not during a formal interview.
...
In the search warrant affidavit filed after his indictment, Emerald told investigator Kent Delbon that he felt “he had been pressured for an explanation or he would be charged with arson.” He added that Delbon “should investigate the firefighters who allowed the fire to get too big,” the search warrant said. He also said he no longer wanted to talk to Delbon about the fire.


When they dropped charges in the case last year it was reported to be because their prime witness died and without that person they had no case. Now from above we can read that Forest Service investigators had RECORDED Emerald admitting to starting the fire. If that ISN'T enough to make a court case then there is something horribly wrong with our legal system. Many criminals that admit to crimes later recant after being advised so by their later appointed lawyers. The fact the prosecuters didn't record his recanting later was because it was merely a phone call to set up a field session to the scene and sounds more like something his lawyer told him to do. Imagine the conversation went like

pros: Why don't you want to come with us to the scene?
purp: Because I didn't start it. Was Marijuana growers.
pros: What!
purp: And don't want to speak to you anymore. Call my lawyer.

Then I doubt the bow hunter was going to say anything in any case even if the prosecuters had asked him to do so formally. In other words they were set up by the lawyer. Later after the lawyer made a deal about it in court, the purp on lawyer's advice probable refused to be interviewed again before the trial. And THAT was why the public had to wait 18 months before the next peep out of the prosecution. I suspect they were afraid if they brought the case to trial whatever the lawyer had on them might stick and were afraid the public would skewer them for being incompetent during the investigation. And someone got the above link quashed because it would lead to questions. When their witness died (of old age!) they probably felt they could use that as an excuse to dropping the case.



http://www.davidsenesac.com



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 11/04/2015 03:09PM by DavidSenesac.
Wonder if they are investigating the deaths of the two witnesses!!! I am really appalled.
I too am appalled. Where is the outrage??
Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 04, 2015 10:55PM
Seriously? What a travesty and the Feds should be prosecuted for being incompetent. .
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 05, 2015 08:14AM
Why waste the money? Persecuting this guy, spending millions on trial after trial, then fining him millions of dollars he cannot pay. For what? The satifaction of pointing a finger?
Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 05, 2015 03:11PM
Instead of expecting people who set fires to pay money they don't have, maybe they should be required to help the peoples whose lives they affect by cleaning up their burned out homes, working on a fire line, help in a disaster center or whatever else that would show them exactly what their( and others like them ) action's cause.
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 05, 2015 04:29PM
Nobody is expecting anyone to set fires. Persecuting this person will not rebuild any homes or help any firefighter. It would actually take money away from those endeavors. So, again, why waste money in the courts?
Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 06, 2015 09:50PM
I didn't say expecting them to set fires but expecting people who set fires to pay a fine is not feasible. There is a difference. I am also not saying that persecution of fire starter is going to rebuild homes. My point is that anyone that sets a fire should be required to do something that is a help to a community or organization since no one can afford to pay a huge amount of money. And I am not just referring to this specific person.
Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 15, 2015 12:05PM
accountability, Dave. its all about accountability. we all realise that one man cannot afford to pay the $millions in damages, danger and inconvenience to others, but will you feel more, or less safe next time you go out there and follow all the rules~ including using your common sense. or will you only sleep fitfully wondering if some lying, deceitful scumbag is 'doing his own thing' and sod the rest of us. will your next campsite be decided on multiple escape routes. or just based on the (once lovely) scenery and how you connect with a certain spot. lets not fool ourselves: what if the next 'Emerald' leave us with nothing but blackened stumps to troll about in? looking on the bright side, of course, if ALL of Yosemite's trees are incinerated, then there will be no need for fire regulations, and that a**e will be a hero.sad
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 16, 2015 08:18AM
Is this "accountability" worth millions of dollars? Would it bring back any trees? Revenge, blame, calling names, and such, are worthless concepts. They accomplish nothing and detract people from doing something constructive. I'd rather spend the money on repairing the forest than on a protracted trial that cannot be won.
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 16, 2015 04:33PM
Quote
Dave
Is this "accountability" worth millions of dollars? Would it bring back any trees? Revenge, blame, calling names, and such, are worthless concepts. They accomplish nothing and detract people from doing something constructive. I'd rather spend the money on repairing the forest than on a protracted trial that cannot be won.



It's not about revenge or naming calling, but about holding someone accountable when they break the law. It's about justice. He behaved in a reckless fashion and built an illegal campfire that caused millions of dollars of damage to the environment. He should have gone to trail and if convicted serve some jail time due to breaking the law.

Using your logic, murderers shouldn't be tried and convicted since murder trials are the most expensive criminal trials to have, and even if convicted that would not bring the dead person back to life. What a waste of money (using your logic).

.
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 16, 2015 05:56PM
It's not about justice, it's about revenge. I see you have to misrepresent my logic in order to justify your beliefs. I'll not bother with a debate since you need to do stuff like that.
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 16, 2015 06:26PM
Quote
Dave
It's not about justice, it's about revenge. I see you have to misrepresent my logic in order to justify your beliefs. I'll not bother with a debate since you need to do stuff like that.


Whoever stated that bringing the man to justice was about "revenge" besides you?

Others were talking about accountability, not revenge.

.
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 17, 2015 11:14PM
Quote

but about holding someone accountable when they break the law.

What about encouraging others not to break the law?
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 18, 2015 07:31AM
Forward thinking in this country? You've got to be kidding.
Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 05, 2015 05:23PM
Just have him do community service in the park!
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 05, 2015 05:53PM
They'd have to convict him first. The prosecutor dropped the case since it would cost more than it was worth, that, and they failed to present a good case against him.
Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 06, 2015 03:24PM
Quote
Dave
They'd have to convict him first. The prosecutor dropped the case since it would cost more than it was worth, that, and they failed to present a good case against him.

ahh well hopefully he won't start another illegal campfire : /
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 06, 2015 05:43PM
Hopefully he's learned his lesson.
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 06, 2015 07:21PM
Do we have any evidence of that?

I'm not a fan of mandatory sentencing, I think judges should be able to look at the overall situation and make appropriate decisions. In this case, though, we're hoping he's learned his lesson based on...what?
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 06, 2015 07:57PM
Evidence of his learning a lesson? How many fires has he started since then? In this case the judge was unable to look at anything since the investigators botched the case. Hopefully they learned a lesson too.
Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 06, 2015 09:53PM
Just because he has not set another fire is not proof that he has learned a lesson. Maybe he just has not had the chance.
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 07, 2015 08:13AM
Where have I said that anyone starting a wild fire should get off without some kind of punishment? He's had two years of chances to start another fire. The guy is not an arsonist. The fire was accidental, careless, not purposeful. Nowhere did I say he would NOT start another fire. I said HOPEFULLY he learned a lesson.
avatar Re: Charges dropped against man suspected of starting Yosemite’s Rim fire
November 16, 2015 07:13PM
Sorry, when you used that absurd strawman I lost all interest in this discussion.
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