PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A man has been arrested in connection with the Sweet Creek Fires in western Lane County, according to officials.
Forty-four-year-old Elias Newton Pendergrass faces an arson in the first-degree charge after being arrested Tuesday afternoon, Lane County Sheriff’s Office confirmed.
The Mapleton resident is accused of starting the fires, which have burned more than 500 acres since Sunday.
Detectives with the Lane County Sheriff’s Office worked with Oregon State Police to make the arrest. It’s unclear if Pendergrass has an attorney.
The fires have prompted evacuations in the town of Mapleton.