Chino Hills police jailed a 36-year-old transient Saturday morning after a fire was intentionally on a property next to where a law enforcement officer lives in the unincorporated area of Chino.

Carlos Alfonso Duran is being held on $50,000 bail at the West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga.

He is expected to appear in a West Valley Superior Court room Wednesday, Sept. 15 on a single count of arson, according to San Bernardino County court records.

Deputies with the Chino Hills Police Department, which has jurisdiction in the county areas of Chino and Montclair, were called at 9:16 a.m. to the 11500 block of Yorba Avenue, near Francis Avenue, on a report of an intentionally set fire by a transient, Deputy Benjamin Alvarez said.

“Deputies contacted the reporting party who was an off-duty law enforcement officer,” the deputy said. “He heard a female screaming, discovered Mr. Duran in his yard, and observed a fire was burning on a nearby property.”

The unidentified officer chased after the man, who fled by jumping over several fences.

“The fire department arrived, and the fire was quickly extinguished,” Deputy Alvarez.

Chino Valley Fire District spokeswoman Massiel Ladron De Guevara said when firefighters arrived on scene, the blaze had quickly spread from a 50-foot by 50-foot fire to 100-feet by 75-feet.

Firefighters had to cut through a chain on a gate to gain access to the fire, which was quickly stopped after they made access to the grass field, the spokeswoman said.

With help of several deputies on the ground and in a sheriff’s helicopter, the suspect was located and arrested without incident at 10:30 a.m.

“Mr. Duran was positively identified by witnesses who saw him run from the area where the fire was started. The fire was found to have been intentionally set,” Deputy Alvarez said.

The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Bomb and Arson Detail responded to the scene, the deputy said.

Anyone with information can call the Chino Hills Police Department at 364-2000 or the WeTip Hotline at (800) 782-7463.  

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