PG&E pleads not guilty in deadly 2020 California wildfire

In this Sept. 27, 2020, file photo, a house burns on Platina Road at the Zogg Fire near Ono,...
In this Sept. 27, 2020, file photo, a house burns on Platina Road at the Zogg Fire near Ono, Calif. California power regulators are poised to reprimand Pacific Gas and Electric for continuing to neglect its electrical grid that has ignited a series of deadly wildfires in Northern California and could order the utility to do be more vigilant in the upcoming months of hot, windy weather. The anticipated rebuke from the California Public Utilities Commission Thursday, April 15, 2021, would serve as official notice to PG&E that it hasn't been doing enough to reduce the risks posed by a combination of crumbling equipment and overgrown trees susceptible to touching or toppling into nearby power lines.(AP Photo/Ethan Swope, File)
Published: Jun. 9, 2022 at 7:37 PM PDT
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REDDING, Calif. (AP) - A California utility company has pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter and other charges it faces after its equipment was blamed for starting a Northern California wildfire that killed four people and destroyed hundreds of homes in 2020.

The Shasta County District Attorney’s Office says Pacific Gas & Electric was arraigned Thursday at a court in Redding on 31 criminal counts and enhancements, including four counts of involuntary manslaughter.

A preliminary hearing in the case was set for next year.

The wind-whipped Zogg Fire began on Sept. 27, 2020, and raged through rugged terrain and small communities west of Redding. Last year, state fire investigators concluded the fire was sparked by a tree that fell onto a PG&E distribution line.

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