Crime - Sacto 911

Ask Sacto 911 crime Q&A: What happened to former Yolo County volunteer firefighter convicted of arson?

Q: Robert Eric Eason was convicted of arson fires set in 2006 in the Esparto/Capay Valley area. He was sentenced to prison for 40 years. What is his status?

Curious, Woodland

A: Robert Eric Eason, 46, is incarcerated at the California City Correctional Facility in California City.

A Yolo County jury found Eason guilty of starting a dozen grass fires in 2006. They included small flare-ups as well as a wind-driven fire that burned a thousand acres and killed more than 200 sheep. Eason was convicted of 12 felony counts of arson, with enhancements for using time-delay incendiary devices, and two counts of possessing the devices. He was sentenced to 40 years in state prison.

According to stories in The Sacramento Bee, Eason, a former Yolo County volunteer firefighter, became a suspect after roadside cameras showed him making quick trips into a canyon where fires soon started. A tracking device was attached to his car and recorded his movements using the Global Position System.

Authorities said evidence showed Eason’s blue Ford Tempo driving past sites where flames erupted minutes or hours later. In some cases, he made U- turns near the sites. Later, Eason would return to fight the fires with other members of the Capay Valley Fire Protection District.