Local News

Brush Fire Leads To Discovery Of Waste Problem

BEND, OR -- A quarter-acre brush fire reported near Coyote Butte, led deputies to a secondary discovery: human waste draining into the ground on public lands.

Deschutes County deputies and Forest Service officers responded to the fire Tuesday, about 14 miles southeast of Bend. They say a burn barrel left unattended spread to the surrounding area, causing the brush fire. Investigators believe 57-year-old Terry Bass was burning trash from her campsite.

Her camp trailer was nearby, and deputies say they noticed a drainpipe attached to the RV's "black water" fixture (drainage from the toilet), allowing sewage from the trailer to drain into the ground. 

Bass was cited for Reckless Burning, Offensive Littering and third degree Criminal Mischief.

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