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4 under investigation after fire in eastern El Paso County

Four people are being investigated and could be facing charges for arson and violating a burn restriction after allegedly causing a grass fire that prompted evacuations Sunday in eastern El Paso County.

The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office says firefighters and investigators were called to an area near 7200 Soap Weed Road. That’s where they found the blaze, which was contained before it crossed Judge Orr Road.

Deputies say up to four people were shooting at targets, and at least one of them was an exploding target. Investigators say that’s what caused the fire.

The investigation is still ongoing, and charges are expected to be filed.

The sheriff’s office says an old abandoned barn was destroyed in the fire.

Editor’s note: The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office issued a statement identifying the four suspects and saying they were cited for arson and violating a burn ban. The sheriff’s office later issued a correction saying the suspect hadn’t been cited yet, and the investigation is still ongoing. This article has been updated to reflect that change in reportable information.

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The Sheriff’s Office said in a tweet at approximately 5:25 p.m. that residents may return to their homes.

Calhan firefighters say they have reason to believe the started around 3:00 p.m. and was sparked by recreational shooting.

Officials say no one was hurt and no houses were damaged.

*UPDATE: All evacuations lifted for Soap Weed Rd/Judge Orr Rd.
The fire is under control and contained. You may return to your residence.

— EPCSheriff (@EPCSheriff) October 13, 2019

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The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office has issued a mandatory evacuation notice in central El Paso County southeast of Peyton.

Anyone within a one-mile radius of Soap Weed Road and Highway 110 and one mile north of Judge Orr and Soap Weed is ordered to evacuated due to a fire in the area. The Sheriff’s Office tells us they are handling the evacuation.

*Update* Mandatory Evacuation Notice for Fire 10-13-2019
Anyone 1 mile north of Judge Orr/Soap Weed Rd is under a Mandatory Evacuation Notice due to a fire in the area of Saop Weed Rd/Hwy 110. For more info

— EPCSheriff (@EPCSheriff) October 13, 2019

The approximate cross streets for the evacuation are Falcon Highway to the south, Judge Orr Rd to the north, N Bagget Rd to the west and S Calhan Highway to the east.

KRDO Only 2019