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Michigan men charged after illegally camping, starting fire at Isle Royale National Park

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(CBS DETROIT) - Three Michigan men have been federally charged after they were camping in an illegal area of Isle Royal National Park and set a fire that damaged park property in 2022, officials said.

Dylan Kenneth Wagner, 29, of Grand Rapids, Jason Arden Allard, 28, of Macomb, and Scott Warren Allard, 30, of Clinton Township, were charged with one count of lighting, tending, or using a fire causing damage to real property and one count of violating conditions established by the superintendent at Isle Royale National Park, according to U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Michigan Mark Totten.

The charges carry a maximum penalty of up to six months in prison, a $5,000 fine, up to five years probation, and mandatory probation.

Officials say the three men illegally camped near the junction of the Mount Franklin and Tobin Harbor Trails on Aug. 12 and 13, 2022. Camping in that area is prohibited because it is too close to the trail.

The men also started a fire outside the metal rings or grills provided by the park, which caused burning damage to part of the park and "created a public safety hazard," according to charging documents.

Isle Royal National Park is a remote island archipelago in Lake Superior. 

National Park Service officers investigated the incident. 

"Some of America's most stunning places are right here in Michigan, including Isle Royale National Park," said Totten. "These alleged crimes threatened the safety of park visitors, employees, and the ecosystem that sustains a rich diversity of life. We're committed to protecting Isle Royale National Park and Michigan's other national treasures for all to enjoy - today and for generations to come."

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