Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Suspect in Garberville Motel Arson Arrested

Posted By on Tue, Apr 12, 2022 at 3:40 PM

A 30-year-old suspect was arrested early this morning on suspicion of arson in connection with a Monday afternoon fire at the Sherwood Forest Motel on the 800 block of Redwood Drive in Garberville that caused an estimated $750,000 in damage, according to the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office.

Spencer Reuben Jordan was taken into custody just after 6 a.m. at another motel  a block away, a news release states, and deputies located "evidence consistent with arson."

A few hours before the large fire broke out just before 1 p.m., a smaller fire was started by an unknown man in a storage shed at the property, which was contained. Deputies dispatched to the scene were unable to locate the individual.

Multiple agencies responded to the later fire, including Cal Fire, Garberville Fire Protection District, Briceland Volunteer Fire Department and Redway Fire Protection District, which destroyed a wing of the motel, according to media reports.

Jordan was booked into the Humboldt County jail on suspicion of vandalism and arson, the HCSO release states.

Read the HCSO release below:

On April 11, 2022, at about 9:58 a.m., Humboldt County Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to a motel on the 800 block of Redwood Drive in Garberville for the report of a vandalism. According to the reporting party, an unknown man had reportedly lit a small fire inside a storage shed on the property, which had been contained to a plastic tote. The man left the property prior to the notification to law enforcement.

Sheriff’s deputies patrolled the Garberville area for an individual matching the man's description, however, were unable to locate him at the time. Later that afternoon, at approximately 12:56 p.m., the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Emergency Communications Center received multiple 911 calls reporting a large fire at the motel. Numerous fire agencies were dispatched to assist in knocking down the fire, including Cal Fire, Garberville Fire Protection District, Briceland Volunteer Fire Department and Redway Fire Protection District. The fire is estimated to have caused up to $750,000 in damages.

Based upon evidence and witness statements collected on scene, the fire was determined to be arson. Investigators from the Humboldt Bay Fire Arson Task Force were dispatched to assist deputies with an arson investigation. Through their investigation, deputies were able to identify the suspect of this and the earlier vandalism as 30-year-old Spencer Reuben Jordan. Jordan had fled the hotel prior to the arrival of emergency personnel.

On April 12, at approximately 6:18 a.m., Jordan was located by California Highway Patrol Officers at a motel on the 700 block of Redwood Drive. During a search of Jordan incident to arrest, deputies located evidence consistent with arson. Jordan was arrested and booked into the Humboldt County Correctional Facility on charges of arson (PC 451(b)) and vandalism (PC 594(b)(1)). This case is still under investigation.

The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank all participating agencies for their assistance and coordination with this investigation. Anyone with information about this case or related criminal activity is encouraged to call the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office at (707) 445-7251 or the Sheriff’s Office Crime Tip line at (707) 268-2539. 
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Kimberly Wear

Kimberly Wear is the assistant editor of the North Coast Journal.

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