Man sentenced to 5 years for burglarizing fire department truck during Carr Fire

Brian Martinson
Brian Martinson, Chico Police Department

A man who stole items from inside a Redding Fire Department truck during the Carr Fire at Redding, California received much more than the 1-year sentence plus probation recommenced by the Probation Department. Judge Cara Beatty gave Brian Daniel Martinson five years in county jail, according to the Shasta County District Attorney’s Facebook page.

Mr. Martinson had pleaded guilty to grand theft and committing the crime during a natural disaster.

Below is an excerpt from an article in the Redding Searchlight:

Martinson was accused of stealing items belonging to Redding firefighter Erick Mattson that were inside a fire department utility truck while it was parked in front of Mattson’s home.

Mattson was at his Palo Cedro home resting in between fighting the Carr Fire when Martinson broke into the truck.

In August, Martinson was arrested in Chico after being caught shoplifting from a Sportsman’s Warehouse. Officers there found Martinson with a backpack belonging to the firefighter and items from the fire department.

The stolen property included more than $5,000 worth of things that included a laptop and a hard drive containing family photos. Chico police said at the time the hard drive wasn’t located.

Butte County investigators questioned Martinson and he admitted to burglarizing the fire truck, the DA’s office said.

The Carr Fire started July 23, 2018, killed eight people and burned over 229,000 acres and 1,604 structures.

In a different but similar incident, the two men who were arrested on the first day of the Camp Fire for stealing a vehicle and other items from a fire station at Jarbo Gap November 8 have pleaded not guilty to the crimes. Robert DePalma and William Erlbacher, both of Concow, California are scheduled to appear in court December 6 for a preliminary hearing. They remain in custody with bail set at $250,000 each. More information about this incident is at the Chico Enterprise-Record.

The Camp Fire burned more than 153,000 acres at Paradise California, killed approximately 85 people (as of November 25, 2018), and destroyed over 14,000 homes.

Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire. Google+

4 thoughts on “Man sentenced to 5 years for burglarizing fire department truck during Carr Fire”

  1. Upon hearing the sentence and before taking a seat the perp was already calculating the Real Time a 5-year beef will be. But … Good on you, Your Honor!

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