RCMP said a Kamloops woman has been arrested and charged with multiple counts of arson following a joint investigation between the BC RCMP and BC Wildfire Service.
In a media release Monday, police said on April 30, 2022, a resident in the Monte Lake area encountered a suspicious vehicle on a forestry road while investigating some smoke in the hills. The resident took note of the license plate and reported it to the RCMP.
RCMP said the community was alerted to this suspicious vehicle through a news release issued on May 3, 2022, which prompted other local residents to report their own encounters with the vehicle, driven by a woman.
An investigation was jointly conducted by the BC RCMP and BC Wildfire Service.
On May 11, 2022, 42-year-old Angela Elise Cornish of Kamloops was arrested and has since been charged with four (4) counts of arson by BC Prosecution Service, for incidents in various locations in the Southeast District of BC. She is being held in custody until her bail hearing on May 16, 2022.
“I wish to acknowledge the tremendous assistance of the Monte Lake and Westwold residents, who provided our investigators with the valuable information we needed to successfully advance this investigation," said Chief Superintendent Brad Haugli, the RCMP’s Southeast District Commander.
"This is yet another example of the outstanding collective efforts within the BC RCMP to quickly mobilize and secure evidence in support of prosecution. I would like to highlight the exceptional work of BC Wildfire Service throughout this investigation. We also appreciate the close working relationship we enjoy with the BC Prosecution Service.”
Lisa Hudema, Wildfire Enforcement Superintendent with the BC Wildfire Service says this spring an area of interest was identified near Kamloops, BC due to several human-caused wildfires on Crown Land that were suspected incendiary in nature.
"Due to the close working relationship between the RCMP and BC Wildfire Service, coupled with the serious nature of these fires, resources were quickly deployed to this priority investigation," said Hudema.
"BC Wildfire Service Provincial Fire Origin and Cause Investigators are jointly investigating these fires with the RCMP Southeast District General Investigation Section. Once the investigation into the origin and cause of these wildfires are completed, a report will be provided to the RCMP that will support their investigation. The report will not be released to the public until the RCMP’s investigation is complete.”
The RCMP encourages residents to be vigilant of suspicious activities or persons in your neighbourhoods and report them to your local police. Wildfires can be reported to BC Wildfire Service by calling 1-800-663-5555 or dialing *5555 from your cell phone.