'You loot we shoot': Neighbors defy wildfire evacuation orders to protect property

75756A5E-120A-4932-810C-2FD980DB785E

It was dark and extremely smoky Monday afternoon, but just where the road was closed at Santa Rosa’s Rincon Valley neighborhood, we met neighbors John Allen and Al Smith.

Standing next to a sign reading "You loot we shoot," it was clear they intended to stay as long as possible to protect their properties.

Neighbors John Allen and Al Smith protect Santa Rosa’s Rincon Valley neighborhood after the Glass Fire moved through.
Neighbors John Allen and Al Smith protect Santa Rosa’s Rincon Valley neighborhood after the Glass Fire moved through. Photo credit Kathy Novak/KCBS Radio

Driving along Highway 12, you can see where fire came through and scorched the earth and some vehicles. There’s ash falling from the sky.

This area east of Santa Rosa is under an evacuation order, so it is completely deserted.

Smith has lived here 12 years said he watched the Glass Fire approaching overnight.

"We were up on the roof until about two o’clock in the morning watching it come down the hill," Smith told KCBS Radio. "Within 30 minutes, it was rushing down the hill like lava. It was crazy. In those situations, where you got no access points. You absolutely want to be more secure."

A very sad and familiar scene near Santa Rosa.
A very sad and familiar scene near Santa Rosa. Photo credit Kathy Novak/KCBS Radio

He said others are right to evacuate, even though he personally feels prepared to wait it out.

"I don’t think I’m going anywhere," Smith added. "I’m staying around the make sure (my trailer is) protected and my house is secure."

Just last month, a firefighter's wallet was stolen as crews battled the LNU Lightning Complex.

Authorities are reiterating their calls for people to heed evacuation orders.

Right where we were on Los Alamos Rd., first responders had to go back and rescue people who had refused to leave their homes.

And, of course, that diverts resources from fighting the fire.