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Woman pleads guilty to Monte Lake, Kamloops arson

Fires sparked in spring of 2022 following the devastating White Rock Lake wildfires
An old burn pile was reignited near the Westwold landfill and discovered May 1, 2022. (Patrick Green photo)

Breanne Massey

Kamloops This Week

A 42-year-old Kamloops woman has pleaded guilty to several counts of arson, charges related to a string of intentionally set fires in the Kamloops and Monte Lake areas last spring.

Angela Elise Cornish entered the guilty pleas on Thursday (Jan. 26) in Kamloops provincial court before Judge Stella Frame.

Cornish was arrested on May 11, 2022, and charged with multiple counts of arson following a joint investigation between the BC RCMP and BC Wildfire Service into a series of fires that were set in the Lac Le Jeune and Monte Lake areas.

The charges originally sworn against Cornish were connected to four fires — one in Monte Lake on April 30 and three in Lac Le Jeune between May 7 and May 11 of last year.

A resident in the Monte Lake area east of Kamloops encountered a suspicious vehicle on a forestry road while investigating smoke in the hills, according to police on April 30, 2022. The resident took note of the licence plate on the pickup truck and reported it to the RCMP.

Other residents then reported to police their own encounters with the vehicle, driven by a woman.

Crown counsel Evan Goulet requested a pre-sentence report to be completed within six weeks. Cornish’s counsel, Brad Smith, was in agreement with Goulet’s request.

The matter will return to court on March 9.

Monte Lake, about 45 kilometres east of Kamloops on Highway 97, saw many homes and structures destroyed by flames in the summer of 2021 when the White Rock Lake wildfire ripped through the community.

READ MORE: VIDEO: Wildfire near Westwold closes road

READ MORE: Westwold wildfires extinguished, RCMP investigate suspected arson


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A blue pickup truck driven by a woman is captured on camera April 8 following a suspicious fire near Westwold. (surveillance image)

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