Arson suspected in RC area grass fires

$2,500 rewards offered for information leading to who intentionally started the early morning Sept. 7 fires

The landscape is charred as a result of a Sept. 7 grass fire at the intersection of Government Road and 500th Street in Rushseba Township. The sign says arson is suspected and rewards of up to $2,500 are being offered to anyone with information on the person or people responsible. Photo supplied

The landscape is charred as a result of a Sept. 7 grass fire at the intersection of Government Road and 500th Street in Rushseba Township. The sign says arson is suspected and rewards of up to $2,500 are being offered to anyone with information on the person or people responsible.
Photo supplied

Authorities are offering rewards of up to $2,500 to anyone with information about who is responsible for igniting two grass fires early Saturday, Sept. 7, a few miles east of Rush City.

According to Rush City Fire Chief Bob Carlson, the Fire Department responded to the first fire call at 1:30 a.m. at 500th Street and South Bremer Avenue, a half-mile east of Forest Boulevard, in Rushseba Township.

There, a resident said she came out of her house and observed the ditch smoking. Firefighters extinguished it, and no suspicious activity was immediately noticed, a report from the Chisago County Sheriff’s Office said.

Suspicion only grew, however, when the Fire Department responded to a second grass fire a couple of miles away at 3:30 a.m. in the northwest quadrant of Government Road and 500th Street. It appeared the blaze was intentionally set; firefighters and a sheriff’s deputy found a bottle rocket firework near the origination of the fire, the report indicated.

Deputies checked the area, including Railroad Landing and Stevens Creek Landing, for suspicious vehicles and activity in connection with the fire, but nothing was found.

While less than a half an acre of grass was burned, collectively, the main concern for authorities is the unnecessary risk such fire runs can pose on people.

“You put lives at risk for both the Fire Department and the public when there’s a fire call,” Carlson said.

Anyone with information leading to the identification of the person or people responsible for the fires may receive rewards of up to $2,500 through the Minnesota Arson Reward Project. Call the hotline at 1-800-723-2020.

The Sheriff’s Office also can be reached at 651-257-4100.

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