GREAT FALLS- A call for service was taken by Fish, Wildlife and Parks Warden Investigator Bryan Golie around 1:00 pm on September 5 about a wildland fire west of the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center.

Court documents say officials blocked off the roads and paths leading up to where the fire was burning while waiting for Great Falls Fire Department and the Black Eagle Fire Department to arrive.

After the fire had been put out Warden Golie, Warden Captain Dave Holland and Fire Captain Mike Mcintosh looked for an ignition site. They found the fire was suspicious in nature, with what appeared to be multiple ignition sites on both sides of the trail.

Another fire had been put out in the same location around 1:00 am according to firemen on the scene, and FWP seasonal staff said they had not been using equipment like lawnmowers in the area.

Documents say when Warden Golie reviewed surveillance video from the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center he confirmed that early in the morning a car drove into the interpretive site and circled the parking lot, then left. 

Shortly after, a car came back down Giant Springs Road and parked for a short time at the entrance to the interpretive center before leaving as a fire began to grow in the area it was parked.

Video from the west side of the building showed two fires starting on the trail around 1:00 am in the same location as the 1:00 pm fire later that day.

Court documents say the fires behind the interpretive center were started before the fire at the entrance.

Warden Golie looked into the 9-1-1 call for the early morning fire and found the number that called was registered to a person in Great Falls.

Golie went to the residence the phone number was listed under and saw a blue sedan outside that looked like the one in the surveillance video from the interpretive center.

When Goalie talked to residents of the house it was found that Julia Kolar had her boyfriend, Matthew Cuirtiss Cascell, make the call to 9-1-1.

Court documents say Julia gave statements to warden Golie saying they were driving around Giant Springs State Park, lighting dead grass on fire. She told Golie she lit the fire by the entrance and that Matthew lit the fires on the trail.

Julia also said Matthew likes to play with fire and “wanted to kill the dead stuff so new green stuff would come up later.” and when the fires got out of control, that’s when they called 9-1-1.

Matthew talked with warden Golie and gave statements saying he did call 9-1-1 and they both were lighting bushes on the trail on fire west of the interpretive center. Matthew then told Golie that he lit the fires impulsively and that he “has quite the psych history.”

Julia Darlene Kolar was charged with two counts of arson according to court documents, and Matthew Curtiss Cascell was charged with two counts of arson and has a $50,000 bail amount according to the Cascade County Inmate Roster.


Article updated 10/16/19 with Matthew Cascell's mug shot, charges and bail amounts.

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