Man accused of burning down Holy Fire in a court attack

Clark appears in court on Friday

The man suspected of intentionally setting off the Holy Fire that now threatens thousands of homes in Southern California has made a strange outburst in court, claiming that he could easily & # 39; pay your bail of $ 1 million.

Forrest Gordon Clark, 51, was due to appear in Orange County on Friday, but a judge rescheduled the hearing on August 17 after he could not contain himself during the hearing.

Clark is charged with a felony count for each aggravated arson that damaged at least five inhabited structures, arson of inhabited properties, forest fires and criminal threats, as well as two minor charges of resisting arrest.

He was stripped naked on Tuesday when authorities approached him for questioning about the fire, which began Monday near his cabin in the Cleveland National Forest, about 50 miles south of Los Angeles.

With the critical weather conditions of the Red Flag, the Sacred Fire has grown rapidly to more than 28 square miles, and some 21,000 residents are now under evacuation orders as the flames advance in Orange and Riverside counties.

Clark appears in court on Friday

Clark is seen in a police photo

Clark is seen in a police photo

Forrest Gordon Clark, 51, (left in court and right in the photo) was due to be arraigned in Orange County on Friday, but a judge rescheduled the hearing for August 17 after he could not contain himself during the hearing. appearance.

King Bass, 6, left, sits and watches the sacred fire that burns from his parents' car while his sister, Princess, 5, rests her head on her shoulder on Thursday night in Lake Elsinore, California

King Bass, 6, left, sits and watches the sacred fire that burns from his parents' car while his sister, Princess, 5, rests her head on her shoulder on Thursday night in Lake Elsinore, California

King Bass, 6, left, sits and watches the sacred fire that burns from his parents' car while his sister, Princess, 5, rests her head on her shoulder on Thursday night in Lake Elsinore, California

A firefighting helicopter drops a drop of water as Sacred Fire burns near homes on Thursday in Lake Elsinore, California

A firefighting helicopter drops a drop of water as Sacred Fire burns near homes on Thursday in Lake Elsinore, California

A firefighting helicopter drops a drop of water as Sacred Fire burns near homes on Thursday in Lake Elsinore, California

On Friday, Clark initially refused to face the judge as his lawyer requested suspension of hearing coverage for fear of reprisals against Clark's family.

& # 39; I have to protect the life of my brother, my mother and my brothers! & # 39; Clark yelled, looking at the back wall of the waiting area dressed in an orange jumpsuit stamped in prison.

However, the judge denied the defense request and the cameras with CBS Los Angeles continued to record the process.

Then, Clark turned and stared at the cameras while his lawyer protested that she had not received the police reports of the case and requested that the hearing be maintained.

& # 39; It's a lie! & # 39; Clark stated when the judge read the charges against him, to which the judge informed him that the charges were mere accusations.

When the judge asked him if he understood his rights to request the continuation, Clark replied "I understand but I do not understand".

Clark attended Orangewood Academy, a Seventh-day Adventist high school in Orange County, and then did mission work, according to his Facebook profile.

Clark attended Orangewood Academy, a Seventh-day Adventist high school in Orange County, and then did mission work, according to his Facebook profile.

Clark attended Orangewood Academy, a Seventh-day Adventist high school in Orange County, and then did mission work, according to his Facebook profile.

Clark attended Orangewood Academy, a Seventh-day Adventist high school in Orange County, and then did mission work, according to his Facebook profile.

Clark (left and right) attended the Orangewood Academy, a Seventh-day Adventist high school in Orange County, and went on to do missionary work, according to his Facebook profile

A firefighter observes how the flames approach as he fights against the Sacred Fire in Corona, California, on Friday

A firefighter observes how the flames approach as he fights against the Sacred Fire in Corona, California, on Friday

A firefighter observes how the flames approach as he fights against the Sacred Fire in Corona, California, on Friday

Firefighters fight the Sacred Fire that burns in the Cleveland National Forest in Lake Elsinore, California on Friday

Firefighters fight the Sacred Fire that burns in the Cleveland National Forest in Lake Elsinore, California on Friday

Firefighters fight the Sacred Fire that burns in the Cleveland National Forest in Lake Elsinore, California on Friday

In an outburst in court at the mention of bail, which has been set at $ 1 million, Clark yelled "I can now handle a million easily."

Clark attended Orangewood Academy, a Seventh-day Adventist high school in Orange County, and then did mission work, according to his Facebook profile.

The profile lists his occupation as & # 39; son of the Most High God & # 39 ;.

Clark was living in a cabin on Trabuco Canyon Road when the Sacred Fire began nearby in the midst of Red Flag conditions on Monday. Supposedly he consumed all the nearby cabins except his own.

As the fire grew, Clark offered an unusual video interview to an announcer from Los Angeles OnScene news service.

"I have been terrified by MS-13 and 38th Street, they told me they would send eight Mexicans, to the great Mexicans, and that they were going to kill me," he said at the cameraman's request to talk about the fire.

This map shows the large forest fires that currently plague the state of California, with the Sacred Fire to the south

This map shows the large forest fires that currently plague the state of California, with the Sacred Fire to the south

This map shows the large forest fires that currently plague the state of California, with the Sacred Fire to the south

"I need to get it out on television so if I die, at least you'll know who did it," Clark continued.

When asked if he knew how the fire started, Clark replied, "I have no idea, I was asleep, I had two earplugs, I've been awake for 20 strange days."

& # 39; I woke up uncle and I burned! I woke up and my things were burning! he continued.

Clark said he had ADHD and that he had been put on "depressants". that had the opposite effect to the one they intended.

Frustrated, the cameraman told Clark that the interview was not usable. "Absolutely I'm going to cut everything," said the cameraman. "I can not send that to the television station."

When Clark was taken into custody on Tuesday, he first undressed to disguise his underwear before going completely naked, showing photos of the scene.

Neighbors said Clark threatened the firemen with a sword while fighting the fire.

According to reports, Clark has a history of erratic behavior. Last month, he was placed in a psychiatric detention.

The Volunteer Fire Chief, Mike Milligan, who also has a cabin in the area, says that every resident in the canyon fears him, and claims that Clark sent him a message from Texy saying "everything is going to burn". ;

Clark faces life in prison if convicted of the most important charges against him.

The sheriff's deputies talk to Forest Gordon Clark, a 10-year resident of Holy Jim Canyon whose house was the only surviving structure in his 14-cabin area. Neighbors say that it acts erratically and threatens firefighters with a sword

The sheriff's deputies talk to Forest Gordon Clark, a 10-year resident of Holy Jim Canyon whose house was the only surviving structure in his 14-cabin area. Neighbors say that it acts erratically and threatens firefighters with a sword

The sheriff's deputies talk to Forest Gordon Clark, a 10-year resident of Holy Jim Canyon whose house was the only surviving structure in his 14-cabin area. Neighbors say that it acts erratically and threatens firefighters with a sword

Clark undressed to camouflage his underwear while officers tried to question him about the Sacred Fire on Tuesday

Clark undressed to camouflage his underwear while officers tried to question him about the Sacred Fire on Tuesday

Clark undressed to camouflage his underwear while officers tried to question him about the Sacred Fire on Tuesday

Clark then took off his underwear and was seen refuting with deputies completely naked before his arrest

Clark then took off his underwear and was seen refuting with deputies completely naked before his arrest

Clark then took off his underwear and was seen refuting with deputies completely naked before his arrest

More than 1,200 firefighters are fighting the Sacred Fire, with the mandatory evacuation area covering 7,449 single-family homes. Fire has only 5 percent content.

On Friday, some hillsides were burned under the watchful eye of firefighters as a way to reduce fuel and make it difficult for flames to jump onto roads in communities if winds resume.

The aircraft threw retardant fire on the flames and homes as people ignoring the evacuation orders used garden hoses to spray their properties when the fire went on Thursday night, propelled by gusts of 20 miles per hour.

Shannon Hicks, 59, challenged an evacuation order and watched in amazement as firefighters faced a storm of flames descending into their street in the town of Lake Elsinore.

It seemed like a tornado. The flames just turned and turned, "he said." I thought: There's no way they can save my house. " But somehow they did it.

Residents watch the Sacred Fire burn in the Cleveland National Forest in Lake Elsinore, California, on Thursday

Residents watch the Sacred Fire burn in the Cleveland National Forest in Lake Elsinore, California, on Thursday

Residents watch the Sacred Fire burn in the Cleveland National Forest in Lake Elsinore, California, on Thursday

A firefighting plane throws a fire retardant when the Sacred Fire burns near homes on Friday in Lake Elsinore, California

A firefighting plane throws a fire retardant when the Sacred Fire burns near homes on Friday in Lake Elsinore, California

A firefighting plane throws a fire retardant when the Sacred Fire burns near homes on Friday in Lake Elsinore, California

A truck and a street are covered with a fire retardant thrown by a tanker when the teams fight a forest fire on Friday in Lake Elsinore.

A truck and a street are covered with a fire retardant thrown by a tanker when the teams fight a forest fire on Friday in Lake Elsinore.

A truck and a street are covered with a fire retardant thrown by a tanker when the teams fight a forest fire on Friday in Lake Elsinore.

A resident was not so lucky. Standing on the ashes of his burned home on Friday, Dan Pritchett told KNBC-TV that he and his brother stayed until a wall of flames roared nearby.

"I turned to him and said, 'Let's go,'" said Pritchett. (There were) 100-foot flames right at the top of the hill, right in front of me.

The Sacred Fire, named for Holy Jim Canyon, is now one of the nearly 20 forest fires that hit California amidst unusually hot and dry weather conditions.

In northern California, teams turned a corner in their battle against the Mendocino Complex Fire in northern California, the largest recorded history in the history of the state, achieving 60 percent content. The fire more than 100 miles (160 kilometers) north of Sacramento has destroyed more than 100 homes and blackened an area the size of Los Angeles.

In northern California, a firefighter fighting the Mendocino complex is resting on Tuesday

In northern California, a firefighter fighting the Mendocino complex is resting on Tuesday

In northern California, a firefighter fighting the Mendocino complex is resting on Tuesday

The devastation of the Carr fire is seen near Redding in another wildfire in northern California on Friday

The devastation of the Carr fire is seen near Redding in another wildfire in northern California on Friday

The devastation of the Carr fire is seen near Redding in another wildfire in northern California on Friday

Near the city of Redding, in northern California, the deadliest fire of the year was almost half enveloped and burned in a remote and rugged forest. The Carr Fire has burned more than 1,000 homes.

All the fires grew explosively in the last two weeks when the winds lashed the flames through forests and rural areas full of wood and dry shrubs due to years of drought and a summer of record heat.

Air quality has been another problem. A smoky haze extends from the foothills of the Sierra Nevada to Sacramento and flies over the San Francisco Bay area, with most of the major population centers in the midst of a durable air quality that is considered dangerous to many residents.

After nearly a month of wildfires, the National Weather Service warned that satellite images showed "widespread smoke this morning from fires in the western United States that move north-east across the north. Rocky Mountains to the west and center of Canada and then to the south over the northern Plains. "

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