Three men were arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, conspiracy and exhibiting a firearm in a closed disaster area of the Bear Fire on Thursday in unincorporated Santa Cruz County, Sheriff's deputies said.
Bernard Haagenson, Michael Carter and Drake Geithner were arrested for confronting two other people, Jason Dixon and Nicole Papineau, in the evacuation area Thursday afternoon. Dixon and Papineau were also arrested on suspicion of entering a closed disaster area.
Dixon and Papineau had allegedly entered the area of Bear Creek and Hartman Creek Roads in Boulder Creek to search for a dog around 5:25 p.m. Thursday.
The three men noticed Dixon and Papineau in a vehicle near Geithner's marijuana grow in the 100 block of Hartman Creek Road in Boulder Creek and thought the pair had been involved in a previous theft.
The men confronted the couple, who said they were looking for a dog. Giethner got a shotgun and gave it to Haagenson, who allegedly pointed it at the couple and shot out the pair's front tires.
Sheriff's officials said Haagenson then allegedly shot the front bumper and hood, causing the blast of the shotgun shell to skip off the hood and onto the windshield in front of Papineau. Carter also allegedly threatened the couple with a baseball bat before the couple walked down Deer Creek Road and met with Cal Fire crews, according to police.
Officers found a 12-gauge shotgun at the scene, but sheriff's officials said no evidence was found to prove that Dixon and Papineau were involved in a burglary.
All five people were booked into the Santa Cruz County Jail.