Gunfire has been identified as the cause of the Detwiler Fire, which burned 81,826 acres and destroyed 131 structures in Mariposa County.
Investigators with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection determined that the discharge of firearms, on public lands, sparked the fire. The specific circumstances surrounding the cause remain under investigation, according to a Cal Fire news release.
The fire started shortly before 4 p.m. July 16 in the area of Detwiler and Hunters Valley roads, two miles east of Lake McClure.
The fire, which prompted evacuations in several areas including the town of Mariposa, destroyed 63 residences, 67 minor structures and one commercial structure, according to Cal Fire’s incident website. An additional 13 residences and eight minor structures were damaged.
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Cal Fire asks anyone with information regarding the person or people responsible for starting the fire to call the Crime Stoppers Hotline at 559-498-7867. A $2,000 reward is offered for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case. Callers can remain anonymous.