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Sausalito, CA, declares state of emergency following explosion, fire at homeless encampment

By Web Staff

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    SAUSALITO, California (KPIX) — Officials in Sausalito declared a state of emergency Thursday in regards to the city’s homeless population, one day after an explosion and fire at an encampment Wednesday night led to an arrest.

“Conditions of extreme peril to the safety of persons and property now exist in the City of Sausalito caused by dangerous and sometimes criminal activities at and surrounding the area designated at Marinship Park for transitional overnight sleeping by persons who have no options to sleep indoors,” according to the text of the proclamation obtained by KPIX 5.

“These conditions are likely to be beyond the control of the serves, personnel, equipment and facilities of the city,” the order went on to say.

The state of emergency proclamation comes the day after a resident at the Marinship Park encampment was arrested on arson charges in connection to the explosion and fire.

Officers were called to the encampment at 7:15 p.m. after the blast, which was reportedly heard throughout the North Bay community.

When police arrived, they found a propane tank had exploded and two tents that were destroyed. Police also found the suspect, who said she admitted to using a cigarette lighter to set her tent and a neighboring tent on fire.

No injuries were reported.

The suspect, identified as 61-year-old Debra Ellen Hazelwood, has been booked into the Marin County Jail on suspicion of arson. According to Sausalito Police, Hazelwood’s bail has been set at $150,000.

It was not immediately known when Hazelwood would appear in court on the charges.

The Marinship Park encampment was cleared of the approximately 50 homeless people who lived there earlier Thursday.

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