Brothers arrested after entering Santa Rosa fire zone


SANTA ROSA (KRON)–Two brothers were jailed after they crossed a police barricade in one of the Santa Rosa fire zones in October.

Evan and Mark Neumann say the entered the evacuation zone so they could save items from their mother’s home that burned down.

California Penal Code 409.5 prohibits anyone from entering and remaining in an area closed off by police because of public safety.

Both Evan and Mark believe their minor offense is being used to make an example out of them.

Just eight days after fires tore through Santa Rosa, Evan and Mark had decided to finally go up to their mother’s Fountaingrove home to see what was left.

“We had to try to salvage what we could from our father’s life,” Evan said. “He as a big figure in the community.”

Rain was in the forecast and they didn’t want it to further destroy anything that might’ve survived.

Both Evan and Mark say they had a hard time finding the right authorities to speak to about getting permission to go in.

Mark said one sergeant he spoke to told him, ” ‘Ya know, the police have better things to do than to arrest you and your brother going up to your Mom’s house.'”

They say a man in a U.S. Army uniform told them they shouldn’t be there, but Mark says the man walked away after seeing his ID with the street address.

Minutes later, officers in patrol cars arrived and ordered the Nuemanns to sop and put their hands behind their backs.

Both of them ended up in jail for several hours and were charged with remaining in an evacuation zone after being told to leave, according to the legal complaint.

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