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Residents upset massive wildfire was started by “Controlled Burn”

LOGAN COUNTY, Okla.  - Dozens of agencies continue battling a wildfire Monday in Logan County, east of Guthrie, that began southeast of I-35 and Seward road around 4 p.m. Sunday.

Tommy Rutledge doesn’t know which of his neighbors began a “controlled burn” near Pine St. and Forrest Hills Rd., but the flames devoured his backyard.

Fortunately, the wind shifted the fire away from his house.

“The village idiot wouldn’t burn in these conditions because it’s just plain stupid,” Rutledge said. “Anybody who lives out here knows that, so maybe it’s somebody that just moved out here.”

Several residents expressed their anger at Logan County not being under a burn ban Sunday.

Governor Fallin changed that Monday following a tour of the damage.

Guthrie Fire Chief Eric Harlow said residents do not need a permit to conduct a controlled burn outside the Guthrie city limits when a burn ban is not in effect.

The State Fire Marshall’s office and the Oklahoma Dept of Agriculture, Food and Forestry are investigating the person responsible for the controlled burn.

They did not identify the individual that started the fire, however their final report could make its way to the District Attorney’s office for consideration of criminal charges.