Nov 2, 2016

Alleged manufacture of cannabis and lit cigarette cause of vehicle fire in Arcata



On 11/01/16 at about 6:17 PM, officers responded to assist the Arcata Fire Protection District with the report of a vehicle fire in the 1300 block of F St. Upon the officer’s arrival, they located a 1996 Chrysler coupe fully engulfed in flames. Two people suffering from burns were located on-scene they were later identified as Emily Tice (22) of Arcata and Rolin Smith (27) of Akron OH. Tice was found to be the registered owner of the vehicle. Tice and Smith were transported to the Mad River Hospital by ambulance for treatment of their injuries.

After the fire was extinguished, officers and fire department personnel were able to examine the vehicle in an attempt to locate the cause of the fire. Evidence was located in the vehicle that indicated the occupants of the vehicle were manufacturing concentrated cannabis. As part of the extraction process the subjects were using Butane in the confined space of the vehicle.

It was later learned that one of the vehicle occupants lit a cigarette within the vehicle, before the Butane gases had dissipated, which was the source of ignition for the fire.

The Arcata Police Department took a case for 11379.6(a) H&S: Manufacture of Controlled Substance and will be forwarding the case to the Humboldt County District Attorney’s Office requesting charges against both Tice and Smith.

Tice and Smith both received significant burns and were transferred to a San Francisco burn center for further treatment.

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