Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

Teen Ordered to Pay $36.6 Million For Starting Oregon Wildfire

Popular
Teen Ordered to Pay $36.6 Million For Starting Oregon Wildfire
Eagle Creek fire. Curtis Perry / Flickr / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

A teenager who admitted to starting the Eagle Creek Canyon wildfire in Oregon that singed approximately 48,000 acres of forest land in September was ordered to pay $36.6 million in restitution.

Hood River County Circuit Judge John A. Olson admitted that the youngster will probably never be able to pay the total amount, but was obligated under state law to issue the full award to the victims of the massive blaze, including residents whose properties burned down and the state and federal departments that fought the fire, The Oregonian reported.


In his May 18 opinion, Olson wrote that the "restitution is clearly proportionate to the offense because it does not exceed the financial damages caused by the youth."

"In short, I'm satisfied that the restitution ordered in this case bears a sufficient relationship to the gravity of the offenses for which the youth was adjudicated," he said.

Olson concluded, "the youth cannot pay the judgment in full, and therefore authorizes the Hood River Juvenile Department to establish a payment schedule."

The teen, whose name has not been released, was 15 at the time of the incident. In February, he admitted to throwing the illegal fireworks that sparked the fire. He was sentenced to 1,920 hours of community service, five years probation and had to write an apology "to everyone in the gorge."

Olson ruled that after 10 years, if the teen successfully completes probation, does not commit additional offenses and complies with the payment plans, the court can grant full or partial satisfaction of the restitution judgment.

"The court's hands were tied by the statute with respect to ordering the full amount of the legally appropriate restitution," Jack Morris, the boy's attorney, told The Oregonian, adding that a "rational" sum would be suitable but that "it's difficult to imagine anything more pointless then ordering an adolescent to pay $36 million in restitution."

The restitution amount includes $21 million to the U.S. Forest Service, $12.5 million to the Oregon Department of Transportation, $1.6 million to the Oregon State Fire Marshal and $1 million to Union Pacific Railroad, among others. A $5,000 payment was awarded to Iris Schenk, whose rental home burned in the fire.

Eating lots of fruits and vegetables will boost the immune system. Stevens Fremont / The Image Bank / Getty Images

By Grayson Jaggers

The connection between the pandemic and our dietary habits is undeniable. The stress of isolation coupled with a struggling economy has caused many of us to seek comfort with our old friends: Big Mac, Tom Collins, Ben and Jerry. But overindulging in this kind of food and drink might not just be affecting your waistline, but could potentially put you at greater risk of illness by hindering your immune system.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A graphic shows how Rhoel Dinglasan's smartphone-based saliva test works. University of Florida

As the world continues to navigate the line between reopening and maintaining safety protocols to slow the spread of the coronavirus, rapid and accurate diagnostic screening remains critical to control the outbreak. New mobile-phone-based, self-administered COVID-19 tests being developed independently around the world could be a key breakthrough in making testing more widely available, especially in developing nations.

Read More Show Less

Trending

A meteorologist monitors weather in NOAA's Center for Weather and Climate Prediction on July 2, 2013 in Riverdale, Maryland. Mark Wilson / Getty Images

The Trump White House is now set to appoint two climate deniers to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in one month.

Read More Show Less
A plastic bag caught in a tree in New Jersey's Palisades Park. James Leynse / Stone / Getty Images

New Jersey is one step closer to passing what environmental advocates say is the strongest anti-plastic legislation in the nation.

Read More Show Less

Did you know that nearly 30% of adults do, or will, suffer from a sleep condition at some point in their life? Anyone who has experienced disruptions in their sleep is familiar with the havoc that it can wreak on your body and mind. Lack of sleep, for one, can lead to anxiety and lethargy in the short-term. In the long-term, sleep deprivation can lead to obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

Fortunately, there are proven natural supplements that can reduce insomnia and improve quality sleep for the better. CBD oil, in particular, has been scientifically proven to promote relaxing and fulfilling sleep. Best of all, CBD is non-addictive, widely available, and affordable for just about everyone to enjoy. For these very reasons, we have put together a comprehensive guide on the best CBD oil for sleep. Our goal is to provide objective, transparent information about CBD products so you are an informed buyer.

Read More Show Less

Support Ecowatch