Deputies Arrest Transients After Fire

FireNEAR MEDFORD, Ore. — The cold nights are apparently kick-starting transient warming fires in Southern Oregon. At about 3:15 Saturday morning three Jackson County Sheriff’s patrol cars were sent to reports of a structure fire on Dark Hollow Road. There were multiple transients inside trying to stay warm in the vacant garage. Jackson County Sheriff’s deputies say they were arrested for trespassing. On November 28th, deputies found evidence of another warming fire in the same location, causing substantial damage to the vacant home’s first floor. Deputies say transient activity has been heavy there since July.

On Saturday afternoon, Meford Fire crews contained a mattress fire in a detached garage of a vacant home on Dakota Avenue. Investigators say it did not appear to be a part of the string of vacant arson fires happening in Medford. Medford Fire crews say it could have been a warming fire started by a transient, but the cause of that fire is still under investigation.


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  1. Ryan Navickas says:

    Which part of the story is most disturbing, that people are in danger of freezing, that people are arrested for trying not to freeze, or that people may burn themselves or a house because our community leaders will not raise the money to provide adequate emergency shelter for those at risk of freezing? When will the first death of the season occur? Thanks for reporting on this urgent issue.

  2. Susan Scroggins says:

    Transients are becoming a real threatening problem. They tend to be alcoholics, addicts, and mentally ill people. They have no one supervising them, even a social worker. They seem to be able to find weapons easily. One was waving a gun around in Sizzler in GP yesterday. A week before that one was high and drunk and dancing naked around a fire he built in the middle of the street. The man who accidentally shot the 5 yr old girl was a transient who shouldn’t have a gun at all. If people think gun laws are the answer, the homeless can get guns easier than a legal law abiding citizen who would go through the process of licensing it. The police have their hands full daily moving them from sleeping on public doorsteps and protecting the public from their rants and violence. Amsterdam had a great idea. They now pay their homeless, in addition to soup kitchen type meals, 2 beers in the morning, 2 at lunch, and 2 at dinner, and $13 in exchange for the homeless to do a full’s day work picking up trash and cleaning graffiti up and whatever other labor work is needed by the government. The money is enough to chip in for a cheap room and off the streets, but not enough for drugs or a real binge of drinking. Apparently it is working and the homeless feel they are doing something with their time instead of troubling the public as well as earning a place in society.

  3. Beth says:

    More “real” warming stations?

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