Arrest in Douglas teen’s burning |

Arrest in Douglas teen’s burning


A 14-year-old Douglas County youth was arrested Wednesday afternoon for allegedly setting fire to another teen last week near Topaz.

The boy was charged with reckless endangerment causing substantial bodily harm.

He is alleged to have set fire to 14-year-old Ky Nielsen as a group of teens siphoned gas on a ranch near the intersection of highways 208 and 395 north of Topaz Lake. The incident happened about 1 p.m. on Jan. 15.

“The juvenile was arrested and charged with the crime after a lengthy investigation into the cause of the fire determined that he possibly had some involvement or was the cause of the ignition of the fire,” said Tom Mezzetta of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Department.

Nielsen received second- and third-degree burns over his upper body and underwent skin-graft surgery on his left hand Monday at the Shriners Hospital for Children in Sacramento, where he has been treated since the incident.

Four hours after being burned, the boy was taken by private car to Carson Valley Medical Center in Gardnerville before being transferred to Shriners Hospital.

Douglas County detectives were in Sacramento last week to interview the boy and investigators went to the Topaz ranch where the fire happened.

Members of the Carson Valley Sertoma Club set up an account in the boy’s name to help offset costs of travel and other expenses.

Donations may be made at the U.S. Bank in Gardnerville under the account number: 153751299105.

“People have started to make donations,” said Sertoma Chairman George Liddell.

Contact Teri Vance at or at 881-1272.