From CBS:

CBS News has learned a task force of agencies, including the FBI, ATF, the Orange County Fire Authority and the California Department of Forestry will announce shortly that the massive Santiago Canyon Fire — which has caused an estimated $10 million in damage — is being officially declared an arson, and a $70,000 reward is being offered to find the arsonist.

Investigators have identified two separate “points of origin” where they believe the fire was set, CBS News has learned. FBI agents secured the scene to “maintain its integrity.”

The Santiago Fire has burned about 19,200 acres east of Irvine, officials said, and it is around 30 percent contained. Six homes and eight outbuildings have been destroyed, with another eight homes and 12 outbuildings damaged. Four firefighters have been injured fighting the blaze and about 3,000 people evacuated.

In San Bernardino County, a man suspected of starting a small fire was arrested and another man was shot to death by police after he fled officers who approached to see if he might be trying to set a fire.

Why is the FBI involved?  To “protect the integrity of the fire?”

It’s just my learned speculation, but I think that someone thinks this might be an organized act of terrorism.

I can’t think of another reason the FBI would have jurisdiction to investigate, and the Fire Marshall’s office is more than basically competent to  investigate outdoor arson, so there would be no call for supplementary FBI forensic support.

Stay tuned and keep praying for the poor people in SoCal.

St. James, pray for them.

WAC

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