San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department

Press Release

DATE/TIME: December 16, 2016 3:10am

INCIDENT: Attempt Murder / Arson

LOCATION: 400 block of Merrimack Drive, Lake Arrowhead

SUSPECT: Joseph Cardenas, 26 years old


On December 16, 2016, at approximately 3:12 a.m., deputies from the Twin Peaks Sheriff’s Station responded to the 400 block of Merrimack Drive in Lake Arrowhead, regarding an arson investigation. A victim called 9-1-1 to report a fire at his residence. The fire was extinguished by the victim when he used a garden hose located at the residence. The suspect, Joseph Cardenas fled the scene when he learned deputies were responding. Deputy Bullag arrived on scene and began his investigation. Deputy Bullag discovered the residence was deliberately set on fire by Cardenas in multiple locations. Two people(victims) were in the residence and awake when the fires were started. They were able to extinguish the flames before they spread.

While Deputy Bullag was inside a bedroom speaking to a victim, Cardenas ignited another fire inside residence using a propane tank and some paper. Deputy Bullag noticed the smoke and saw Cardenas running away. Cardenas was quickly detained by Deputy Bullag and the fire was put out by a garden hose.

Cardenas was arrested for Attempt Murder and Arson, and transported to the West Valley Detention Center for booking. Cardenas was also booked for Attempt Murder of a Peace Officer due to Deputy Bullag being inside the residence when the fire was started.

Anyone with further information about the case should contact the Twin Peaks Sheriff’s Station (909) 336-0600. Callers wishing to remain anonymous are urged to call the We-tip Hotline at 1-800-78-CRIME (27463) or you may leave information on the We-Tip Hotline at

Refer: Public Information Officer Gil Flores

Station: Twin Peaks

Case #: 051602120

Phone No. 909-336-0600

John McMahon, Sheriff-Coroner

San Bernardino County Sheriff-Coroner Department

Sheriff’s Public Affairs Division

655 E. Third Street

San Bernardino, California 92415-0061

Telephone: (909) 387-3700