Body found in Mt. Wilson burn area was that of missing 18-year-old, authorities say

Firefighters battled a brush fire burning in the Mt. Wilson area last week.
(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

A burned body found near Mt. Wilson last week as firefighters battled a brush fire belonged to an 18-year-old who was reported missing earlier that day, authorities said Wednesday.

Police and coroner’s officials identified the man as Matthew Huerta, who was last seen in Sylmar the morning of Oct. 18.

The Los Angeles Police Department released a photo and description of Huerta after he went missing and asked for help finding him.

“Matthew’s family is concerned for his safety because he is suicidal,” the police statement said.


Huerta’s body was found later that day in a burned area south of a parking lot at the Mt. Wilson Observatory.

Coroner’s officials said they had scheduled an autopsy for Wednesday to determine how he died. At the time his body was found, officials said it was not clear whether the 50-acre fire burning nearby had caused his death.

Times staff writer Sonali Kohli contributed to this report.



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