Table Rock firestarter arrested for violating probation

BOISE -- A 20-year-old man who started a wildfire that scorched 2,600 acres in the Boise Foothills is back behind bars for violating his probation in the case.

Taylor Kemp was taken into custody at his Middleton home Tuesday, the same day a judge issued a warrant for his arrest. 

According to the Ada County Sheriff's Office, Kemp violated his probation by failure to maintain full-time employment, be actively seeking employment, or be enrolled as a full time student; failure to pay fines and failure to pay restitution. 

MORE: 'A horribly reckless, thoughtless act:' 20-year-old sentenced for starting Table Rock Fire

In addition, a sheriff's office spokesman said, investigators had received information that Kemp may have been planning to leave the state.

Kemp was sentenced in May to four days in jail for starting the destructive Table Rock Fire, which sparked June 29, 2016 after Kemp shot off fireworks in the foothills, igniting the dry grass. 

RELATEDJudge: Boise man's firework started Table Rock Fire

The blaze quickly spread out of control, burning one home to the ground and threatening hundreds more as firefighters scrambled to contain the flames. It took several days for crews to extinguish the wildfire. 

Kemp - who called KTVB's newsroom after the fire started, purporting to have witnessed "wasted" teens set the blaze - emerged as a suspect in the months that followed. He was arrested in September after confessing to a detective that he had been shooting off Roman candles the night of the fire. 

PREVIOUSInvestigators say fireworks sparked wildfire near Table Rock

He ultimately pleaded guilty to misdemeanor unlawful use of fireworks. In addition to the jail time, Kemp was ordered to pay more than $391,000 in restitution to the City of Boise, the Bureau of Land Management, Idaho Power and Van Danielson, the man whose home burned down. 

Court records show that Kemp has made $482 in payments towards that total since May. Defendants ordered to pay restitution are allowed to set up payment plans; it's not clear whether Kemp was current on his payments, or how much he had agreed to pay per month. 

READOwner of burned home: 'It was destroyed by stupidity'

The prosecutor on the case could not immediately be reached for comment. 

Kemp is currently held in the Canyon County Jail on a no-bond warrant, meaning that the defendant will have to be transported back to Ada County and appear before a judge before he can ask to be released. 

The next court date in the case has not yet been set. 

© 2017 KTVB-TV


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