Colby fire smoldering east of Los Angeles is 95% contained


Fire officials announced Tuesday that the Colby fire smoldering in the hills above Glendora and Azusa is 95% contained and said they expect it will be fully contained by Wednesday.

The blaze has scorched 1,952 acres and frustrated firefighters for days as it burned its way through steep terrain. At last count, five homes had been destroyed and seven damaged, according to the U.S. Forest Service.

All mandatory evacuation orders were lifted over the weekend and the smoke from the fire that lay heavily over Los Angeles has largely cleared.


The fire broke out Thursday morning, sparked by an illegal campfire near Colby Trail and Glendora Mountain Road, authorities said. It spread quickly, fueled by strong winds and low humidity and steep terrain that made it difficult for firefighters to access.

At one point, more than 1,000 firefighting personnel had been assigned to the blaze. That number was fewer than 300 as of Tuesday.

Glendora Police Chief Tim Staab said three men were cold and tossed paper into an illegal campfire when a gust of wind “just blew embers all over the place.”

The three men -- identified as Clifford Eugene Henry, 22, of Glendora; Jonathan Carl Jarrell, 23, of Irwindale; and Steven Robert Aguirre, 21, who police say is a transient from Los Angeles -- were arrested and will face federal charges, authorities said.

The three men had been scheduled to appear in court Tuesday, but a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office said it was unclear whether that was still the case.

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