Feds Release Video Showing How A Border Patrol Employee’s Gender Reveal Party Caused A Massive Wildfire

Tim Pearce | Energy Reporter

The Forest Service released a video showing how a Border Patrol agent’s gender reveal party ignited the 47,000 acre Sawmill Fire in southern Arizona in April 2017.

The video was first obtained by the Arizona Daily Star through a Freedom of Information Act request. The 49-second clip shows a target exploding in a burst of blue powder and flames, igniting dry grass around where it was set. A man’s voice is heard yelling to “start packing up” as the fire spreads. (RELATED: Border Patrol Agent’s Gender Reveal Party Started Massive 47,000 Acre Wildfire)

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The video features several black rectangles covering people who drift into the shot. Forest Service authorities censored the people to protect their privacy.

Dennis Dickey, a U.S. Border Patrol agent, pleaded guilty in federal court to a misdemeanor crime of starting a fire without a permit on Sept. 27. Dickey agreed to pay $220,000 in restitution and participate in a public service announcement by the Forest Service on the Sawmill Fire.

Dickey had packed the target for his wife’s baby gender reveal with blue powder and Tannerite, a legal substance designed to explode when shot. Dickey shot the target and ignited the Tannerite, sending sparks and flames into nearby dry brush. High winds quickly whipped the fire out of control, according to the Department of Justice.

Hundreds of firefighters spent about a week fighting the fire. The blaze cost about $8.2 million to put out, the Arizona Daily Star reported.

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