Local News

Man arrested, accused of starting Elbert County wildfire

ELBERT COUNTY, Colo. - The Elbert County Sheriff's Office arrested a man Tuesday in connection with the June 2012 "County Road 102 Fire" that burned several hundred acres and caused the evacuation of the town of Elbert.

19-year-old Alex J. Averette is an Elbert County resident and a volunteer firefighter from the Elbert Fire Protection District.

Averette is being held at the Elbert County Jail on a $50,000 bond for the offenses of Intentionally Setting Wildfire, 2nd Degree Arson, Reckless Endangerment, Criminal Mischief and 2nd Degree Criminal Trespass.

On June 24, 2012, the Elbert County Sheriff's Office and multiple fire agencies were dispatched after the report of a fire. The blaze was located just north of the town of Elbert in the area of County Road 102.

The initial attack on the fire lasted for 6 operational periods (12 hours each) and utilized over 100 fire and law enforcement personnel from multiple agencies.

Firefighting resources around the state were limited at that time due to the Waldo, Hyde Park and other major fires throughout Colorado, the Elbert Sheriff's Office said.

The fire scene was active for 18 days.

The agencies represented in the efforts were: Elbert Fire, Kiowa Fire, Elizabeth Fire, Rattlesnake Fire, North Central Fire, Simla Fire, Franktown Fire, South Metro Fire, Castle Rock Fire, Larkspur Fire, Elbert County Sheriff's Posse, Douglas County Sheriff's Office, Elbert County Office of Emergency Management, Douglas County Office of Emergency Management, Douglas County Incident Management, Denver Office of Emergency Management, University of Colorado Emergency Management, Boulder Office of Emergency Management, Ares District 24, Colorado State Forest Service, Colorado Division of Emergency Management, Elbert County Planning, Elbert County Road and Bridge.

Sheriff Heap said the investigations unit has spent countless hours on this case and is proud of the work they have done to bring the responsible individual to justice.

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