Suspect arrested in two Grass Valley spot fires |

Suspect arrested in two Grass Valley spot fires

Liz Kellar

A man believed to be homeless and living in a camp in the woods has been arrested in connection with two spot fires in the Glenbrook Basin last week.

Kyle Patrick Cartmell, 35, has been charged with arson; he was booked into Nevada County jail and released on $10,000 bail.

Grass Valley firefighters responded shortly after midnight Thursday, Oct. 12, to a fire between Sutton Way and Brunswick Road, staying for two hours, Battalion Chief Steve Smith told The Union.

“There was nobody there when we got there,” Smith said.

Firefighters learned about a second, 10-by-10-foot fire off Plaza Drive while at the first blaze, the battalion chief said.

Smith said the second fire was roadside, about 200 yards away from the first fire.

About 8:30 a.m., two detectives from the Grass Valley Police Department and a Grass Valley Fire investigator returned to the area to check the camp, said Police Capt. Steve Johnson. They located items at the camp belonging to Cartmell and began searching for him.

“They found him nearby trying to hide in tall grass,” Johnson said, adding that Cartmell was trying to belly-crawl away.

Cartmell was detained and the detectives reportedly found evidence that he had been at the campsite and might have tried to extinguish the fire. Cartmell, whose clothing showed charred spots, denied any knowledge of the blazes, Johnson said.