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Man Arrested For Starting A Fire Near The Start Of The Pipeline Fire Has Been Conditionally Released From Jail

The man who was arrested for burning toilet paper near the reported start of the Pipeline Fire has been released from jail, conditionally. Court documents show 57-year-old Matthew Riser was released Thursday on his own recognizance to Working Alternatives in Flagstaff, while charges are still pending. Riser is facing two misdemeanor counts of building a fire during restrictions and residing on the national forest. A third count of marijuana possession was dropped earlier this week. Court documents say Riser ignited toilet paper and placed it under a rock, several feet from a forest road back on Saturday, June 11th. On that Sunday at around 10:30 a.m., a fire was reportedly burning brush and trees. A man in a white Chevy pickup truck, with a camper shell and Louisiana license plates, was seen driving quickly away from the fire. Court documents say a deputy pulled Riser, driving that vehicle, on Highway 180. He told the officer he was camping in the area and burned his used toilet paper Saturday, never thinking it would smolder all night. Riser told officers he tried putting out the fire with his sleeping bag, but with no luck. Riser admitted to burning the toilet paper, but hasn’t admitted, or has been charged, with starting the Pipeline Fire. His next hearing will be July 6th at 10:30 a.m. in federal court in Flagstaff.