Orange County firefighters battled a blaze at a large house in Laguna Hills Wednesday amid a barricade situation.
Deputies were called at 10:30 a.m. to 27716 Greenfield Drive for a dispute, said Jaimee Blashaw, public affairs manager for the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.
Richard Quintilone, 49, was booked on suspicion of arson, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.
It appears the original call was about a family dispute, but it may have been a dispute between neighbors, said Gail Krause, a spokeswoman for the sheriff’s department.
Later, sheriff’s officials said Quintilone was accused of throwing a boat propeller through the windshield of a vehicle in the neighborhood.
“When (deputies) arrived they tried to make contact but the door was locked and they noticed the smoke and open flames,” Krause said.
When deputies tried to talk to Quintilone, he ran back into the house and deputies saw the flames, sheriff’s officials said.
Quintilone refused to come out, prompting deputies to go into the house and try to find him, but they could not, deputies said.
Deputies evacuated neighbors from their homes.
Orange County Fire Authority firefighters were in a “defensive posture,” having to pour water on the flaming house from a distance while deputies suspected Quintilone was barricaded in the home, Krause said.
They managed to put the fire out and keep it from spreading, Krause said. The fire caused significant damage to the house.
Neighbors alerted deputies to the suspect’s whereabouts on a nearby street about 12:20 p.m. and he was arrested without incident, Krause said.