Sheriff: Man starts 4 fires in 2 days, jailed on arson charges

Sheriff: Man starts 4 fires in 2 days, jailed on arson charges

DOUGLAS COUNTY, Ore. -- A man has been arrested and charged by deputies with starting four fires in southern Douglas County in two days.

On Wednesday, the DFPA responded to two suspicious fires on the West Fork of Cow Creek Road west of Glendale.

Officials say they determined the fires had been intentionally set.

On Thursday morning, DFPA crews say they found a suspicious male on Walker Prairie Road near the West Fork of Cow Creek. After they talked to the man, they say he ran into the brush.

At about 2:00 pm, two more fires broke out on Walker Prairie Road near the location where the man ran into the brush. officers looked for several hours but say they did not find the man.

At about 8:00 pm, a DFPA fire fighter saw the man, later identified as James Luke Abbott, a 50-year-old transient. Authorities say Abbott was on the roadway about 1 mile from the earlier fires.

A Douglas County Sheriff's deputy responded to the area and says he found Abbott hiding in the brush. Abbott was taken into custody after an interview.

Abbott was transported to the Douglas County Jail and charged by deputies with four counts of first degree arson, false information and an outstanding warrant for failure to appear.