Wanting to reveal the gender of their unborn child, they set off a smoke bomb and set off a fatal forest fire. Now a married couple is on trial in the USA.
Los Angeles – A couple in California are tried for negligent homicide in connection with a fatal forest fire.
The couple is accused of setting off a fire by igniting a smoke bomb at a gender reveal party last September, the public prosecutor in the San Bernardino district said. At these celebrations, parents-to-be reveal whether their child is a girl or a boy.
A firefighter was killed while extinguishing the rapidly spreading fire. The so-called El Dorado fire raged over an area of almost 90 square kilometers, displaced thousands of residents and destroyed several houses. The authorities had previously warned that in the face of heat and drought, there was an extreme risk of forest fires and negligent or illegal use of fire was a criminal offense.
The couple pleaded “not guilty”. The defendants have to appear again in court in mid-September. If found guilty, there is a risk of imprisonment.
Last year, California experienced the most devastating forest fire season on record. More than 30 people were killed and over 10,000 buildings were damaged or destroyed. After an extremely dry winter, the forest fires on the US west coast started unusually early this year. There are currently dozens of burns in California, Oregon, Washington, and western Canada. dpa