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Arraignment Scheduled For Emerald

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Fresno, CA — The Columbia man accused of starting last year’s Rim Fire will be arraigned this afternoon.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office reports that 32-year-old Keith Emerald “self-surrendered” this morning, and will appear for a 1:30pm court appointment in federal court in Fresno. The arraignment will be before Magistrate Judge Gary S. Austin.

Emerald faces two felony counts and two misdemeanors.  The charges are for Timber Set Afire, False Statement to a Government Agency, Fire Left Unattended and Unextinguished, and Violating a Fire Restriction Order.

The Rim Fire started on August 17th and went on to burn 257,000 acres.