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Man charged in connection with Scott Fire in Yuba County foothills pleads not guilty

A man was charged Monday with several counts of arson in connection to last month’s Scott Fire and could face more than 50 years in prison if convicted.

Prosecutors from the Yuba County District Attorney’s Office said James Matthew Fiske, 34, of Browns Valley set multiple fires near Scott Grant Road, three of which were connected to the wildfire that began June 15 and charred 115 acres before firefighters gained containment four days.

No one was injured and no structures were damaged from the blaze, which remains under investigation by Cal Fire.

Fiske was arrested July 20 by Cal Fire investigators and Yuba County sheriff’s deputies at the Rio Inn and Suites in Linda, the District Attorney’s Office said in a news release.

Fiske, who also faces several felony domestic violence charges, pleaded not guilty at his arraignment Monday in Marysville.

He remains in custody at the Yuba County Jail in lieu of $1.25 million bail.

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If convicted, Fiske faces a max sentence of more than 50 years in prison, prosecutors said. He’ll return to court Aug. 23.

Any tips related to the investigation can be made to Cal Fire Nevada-Yuba-Placer unit Capt. Ryan Smith at 530-889-0111.

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