Deputies searching for a suspect soon found themselves in a suspected arson investigation Friday, officials said.
After sheriff’s deputies set up a containment area on San Martinez Road in Val Verde, the sheriff’s helicopter spotted a fire breaking out down the road from where deputies were reportedly closing in on a suspect.
The first units on the scene were sheriff’s deputies from the containment, using fire extinguishers before L.A. County fire officials arrived, according to witnesses.
Shortly after 7 p.m. firefighters arrived on the 29000 block of Borton Street then quickly worked to contain the blaze.
“They called smoke showing from about 2 miles outside the location,” said Michael Pittman, a Fire Department spokesman. “We got there, and they said it was about an acre.”
At 7:43 p.m., officials announced forward progress had stopped, and the blaze had been held to a single acre.
“The units are going to be out there for an hour because they want to basically make sure they’ve got a 100% mopup, as they say it,” said Pitmman. “Basically they want to soak the entire area down that’s within the (fire) line.”
Air and bulldozer units were released from the call.
As of 8 p.m., the prevailing theory by deputies on the scene of the incident was that the fire was used as a potential diversion to pull deputies away from the contained suspect.
Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station officials were unavailable for comment as of the publication of this article.