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Video suggests possible arson in Poinsettia fire

A homemade video could provide a clue as to what started the 400-acre Poinsettia fire in Carlsbad, according to a report aired on Thursday night on KGTV.

The video, taken by Adam Jordan, who was doing landscape work above Poinsettia Lane, shows the fire beginning at a bush near the golf course at Alga Norte Community Park.

Jordan said he saw someone drive away in a golf cart just as the fire began, adding that the driver stopped 100 yards away, turned around and watched the blaze for 20 minutes or so before heading off. But Jordan was too far away to see what the person looked like.

The Poinsettia fire, which began around 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, apparently caused at least one death. Firefighters on Thursday afternoon found a badly charred body in a homeless encampment in Carlsbad. If the fire was caused by arson, the arsonist could now face charges of first-degree murder.

The fire burned through 400 acres and destroyed an 18-unit apartment complex, four single-family homes, two commercial structures, two vehicles and another unidentified structure, as well as damaging six other residences. Total damages are estimated at $22.5 million.

In the meantime, two teens were taken into custody on suspicion of arson after a small brush fire broke out in Escondido’s Kit Carson Park on Thursday night.

Officials said early Friday that residents of two neighborhoods of San Marcos have been allowed to return home. A flare-up Thursday in the north San Diego suburb prompted more than 18,000 new evacuation notices as flames raced through tinder-dry brush on hillsides. That fire was 10 percent contained Friday morning.

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