1. #1
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    Post Plea agreement sought in Sequoia National Park fire

    FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - The woman accused of starting a fire that
    blackened more than 150,000 acres of the Sequoia National Forest
    last summer would spend 18 months in prison under terms of a plea
    agreement filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Fresno.
    Peri Dare Van Brunt is scheduled Monday to enter guilty pleas to
    three federal misdemeanors, each with a maximum sentence of six
    months. The sentences would be served consecutively.
    The so-called McNally fire was the worst in Sequoia National
    Park history. It reportedly began after a campfire started by Van
    Brunt, who was cooking hot dogs July 21, blew out of control.
    In addition to 150,696 acres of forest area, the six-week, $60
    million blaze destroyed three homes, five commercial properties,
    including the lodge, and six outbuildings.
    Van Brunt agreed to plead guilty to leaving a fire unattended
    and unextinguished; causing timber and other growth to burn; and
    setting a campfire without removing flammable material from around
    the site.
    All three counts are misdemeanors. She originally was indicted
    on a felony charge that carried a maximum sentence of five years in
    custody.

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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  2. #2
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    Post Pleads guilty

    Woman accud of starting Sequoia wildfire pleads guilty
    FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - An unemployed cook accused of starting a
    fire that scorched more than 150,000 acres of forest last summer
    pleaded guilty Monday as part of a deal with prosecutors.
    Peri Dare Van Brunt, 46, lit a campfire without a permit on July
    21, prosecutors said. She was trying to cook hotdogs when the fireblew out of
    control.
    Van Brunt told authorities that she was smoking methamphetamine
    the night before the fire. She has a jail record for drug
    convictions, and was placed in a drug-treatment program after her
    father posted a $35,000 bond on Aug 2.
    The fire burned the Sequoia and parts of the Inyo national
    forests for about six weeks. The blaze also endangered groves of
    sequoias, some of the world's largest and oldest trees.
    Authorities called the fire the worst in Sequoia National Park
    history. The $60 million blaze destroyed three homes, five
    commercial properties, including a lodge, and six outbuildings.
    As part of the plea agreement filed in federal court in Fresno
    last Friday, Van Brunt will spend 18 months in prison for the
    misdemeanor offenses. She will be sentenced next month.
    ---
    On the Net:
    Sequoia National Forest: http://www.r5.fs.fed.us/sequoia
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

    *Gathering Crust Since 1968*
    On the web at www.section2wildfire.com

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