WENATCHEE – Joshua Barnett, the 21-year-old from East Wenatchee, changed his plea during his court appearance Wednesday afternoon and was sentenced for igniting the Horse Lake Road fire back in September. Barnett pleaded guilty to Reckless Burning in the first degree and first degree unlawful delivery of a controlled substance.
The fire in September was ignited when Barnett emptied a marijuana pipe into some dry grass which went on to burn approximately 20 acres, an unoccupied house, and four out-buildings. Barnett was arrested as he drove away from the scene and was also charged with DUI.
The prosecutors office recommended the low-end of the sentencing range but Judge Nakata sentenced him to three months in jail and 10 days of work crew which was closer to the mid-range of sentencing. Barnett will also pay restitution for the fire which has yet to be determined. Attorneys in the case estimate it could be anywhere between $20,000 and $100,000. Over 100 fire fighters worked to put out the blaze along with aerial support from three helicopters.