Suspect in Bully Fire arrested after fleeing for two years


REDDING, Calif. - The suspect behind the Bully Fire that burned through Ono in 2014 was arrested Tuesday.

CAL FIRE says police in Indiana arrested Freddie Alexander Smoke III, on outstanding warrants issued in Shasta County, in Hammond, Indiana.

Smoke was charged with starting the fire in 2014 when his car set dead grass on fire as he drove to an illegal marijuana grow. He was given a $10,000 dollar bail, which he took before skipping town. He was later charged with involuntary manslaughter when the body of Jesus Arellano Garcia was found in the fire's perimeter. His charges were updated and was then given a $1,000,000 bond, but law enforcement couldn't locate Smoke as he had already left the area.

U.S. Postal Inspectors found Smoke after he was identified as someone who was potentially shipping marijuana throughout the state of Indiana.

"I'm proud of CAL FIRE Law Enforcement and all of the agencies involved," CAL FIRE Unit Cheif, Mike Hebrard said.

Smoke has yet to be extradited, but not everyone thinks he should be.

"We ought to leave him in Indiana and let them deal with it," said Tom Smith, an Ono resident, "why tax the payers out here and make them have to pay for his mistakes ... as far as I'm concerned he didn't mean to start a fire."

The ongoing case is being handled by the Shasta County District Attorney's Office. There is no word yet on when Smoke will be brought back to California.