The man accused of starting the fatal Klamathon Fire in July of 2018 pleaded guilty to all counts Thursday morning in a Siskiyou County courtroom.
John Colin Eagle Skoda, 32, was arrested on August 20, 2018, after a joint investigation between CAL FIRE and the Siskiyou County District Attorney’s Office.
According to Siskiyou County District Attorney Kirk Andrus Skoda was camping when the fire began.
“He lit a fire in a fire ring and the wind took it. He tried to stomp it out and when that didn’t work he called authorities,” Andrus said.
The Klamathon Fire started July 5, 2018, and burned on both sides of Interstate 5 in Northern California and spread across the border into Oregon eventually blackening 38,008 acres . One man was killed, Hornbrook resident John Bermel, 72, who died in his home as the fire swept over the structure.
Firefighter Brandon Feller suffered severe burns when his engine was burned over.