“We’ve waited two years six months today for our day in court,” said Firefighter Patrick Jones’s father, John Jones. The two-week trial of two boys accused of starting the flames that destroyed the Porterville (California) Library in February of 2020 and killed Porterville Captain Raymond Figueroa and Firefighter Patrick Jones continued Thursday.
“I think the DA is doing a great job with this particular trial,” said John. Seven witnesses took the stand. Several officers who worked the night of the fire testified, some in tears, recalling every step they took.
The moments they experienced were shown in the courtroom thanks to bodycam video from the officers. “You can see when I come out, I don’t know if it was the captain I talked to, but when I turned around, you can see the door, black smoke, engulfed. And then I told Patrick where the fire was, and that’s the last time I saw Patrick,” said one witness.
Some videos Action News is not allowed to share clearly show when officers got statements from both of the accused minors. A recording of the boys talking inside a patrol car when being transported to the department was also played. For Ray and Patrick’s families, it was the first time seeing the videos and hearing their son’s names by the officers testifying hit home.
“It’s hard for them to not break down, and that’s them not even being related to our sons, so it means a lot,” said Ramon Figueroa, Ray’s father.
Both families remain hopeful justice will be served at the end of the trial.
“Every day, we are going to be here until we reach a verdict. Both of our families have developed a bond where we are just one now,” said the families.
Day three of trial continues Friday afternoon.
FIRE RADIO TRAFFIC: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=St_GSbftcjA