Man suspected of starting small brush fire in Thousand Oaks arrested

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Gustavo Martinez Ramirez, 25, is seen in a booking photo released by the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office on June 21, 2021.

Gustavo Martinez Ramirez, 25, is seen in a booking photo released by the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office on June 21, 2021.

A 25-year-old man suspected of starting a brush fire on a hillside in Thousand Oaks has been arrested, the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office said Monday.

The brush fire was reported about 3:13 a.m. last Wednesday near the 200 block of Rancho Road just south of the 101 Freeway. The Ventura County Fire Department responded and quickly extinguished the flames that burned an acre of brush, officials said.

No structures were damaged by the fire, officials said.

The Sheriff’s Office said someone had reported seeing a man in the area near the southbound 101 Freeway off-ramp lighting a fire.

Shortly after, California Highway Patrol officers in the area responded and saw the flames and a man within 150 yards from the start of the blaze. They then detained the man before handing him over to sheriff’s deputies, officials said.

A preliminary investigation into the cause of the brush fire determined that the flames were the result of arson and that Gustavo Martinez Ramirez was the prime suspect, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Ramirez was booked into jail on suspicion of arson. His bail was set at $60,000.

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