Fire engulfs Temecula house, prompts notice to avoid area
By David Downey
Authorities urged people to avoid an area in southeast Temecula on Friday afternoon, Dec. 29, after responding to a report of a man “acting erratically and screaming for assistance” and allegedly setting a fire that caused extensive damage to a house.
“It is unknown how much the fire did in cost damage, but it engulfed the home and at this time it appears it is uninhabitable,” said Deputy Michael Vásquez of the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department, in an email.
The Riverside County Fire Department extinguished the blaze, said department spokeswoman Jody Hagemann.
According to the notice, the Temecula Police Department received a report of a suspicious circumstance around noon in the 32200 block of Corte Carmona.
The location is near Pauba Road and Meadows Parkway.
The notice stated: “They attempted to make contact with the subject and (the) male refused to exit the residence and started a fire within the home. The male eventually exited the residence and was taken into custody. He sustained minor injuries during the incident.” The man was taken to a local hospital.
Vásquez said he did not know the man’s identity or age. He said the man was not placed under arrest.
“He was taken for an evaluation and showed signs of paranoia,” Vásquez wrote.
No one else was hurt in the incident, the notice stated.
As of late Friday afternoon, Vásquez said authorities were still urging people to stay away from the area as police and fire officials continued to investigate.