Suspect Arrested in Fire that Critically Injured Fresno Fire Captain

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FRESNO, California—Officials announced that a woman was arrested Thursday in connection with a structure fire that badly burned Fresno Fire Captain Pete Dern. Authorities believe the fire was intentionally set.

The woman, identified as Julia Harper, is being held on a charge of unlawfully starting a fire resulting in injury, Fresno Fire Chief Kerri Donis said.

Dern was injured when he fell through a roof at a boarding home at Cortland and Del Mar avenues March 29. He is being treated at Community Regional Medical Center for third-degree burns and other injuries.

Harris had been renting a room at the boarding home, Deputy Fire Marshall Don MacAlpine said.

If found guilty, Harper would face six to seven years in prison, MacAlpine said.

Donis said Dern was undergoing another surgery, and has been in good spirits.

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