Wildfires: Inmate Fighting a Blaze in Utah Accused of Sexual Assault

An inmate from Idaho who was released to help battle a wildfire in Utah is accused of raping a woman who was also helping with the fire.

The unnamed man was charged with first-degree felony rape on Friday after he allegedly sexually assaulted the woman and tried to make her perform oral sex, according to a probable cause statement reported by The Salt Lake Tribune.

The women, who was also not named, reportedly ran the base camp's wash trailer that the inmate was assigned to. The inmate is one of more than 200 people who are reportedly assigned to the fire.

She told police the man flirted with her throughout the past week and went into her trailer on Thursday to ask her for her phone number, according to the Tribune.

After the woman gave her a number that was someone else's "to get him off her back," police said the man started to assault her in an attempt to force the woman to perform oral sex.

She reportedly didn't fight back or yell "because she knew he was a prisoner and did not want to get hurt," police said.

She told camp security guards about the assault, and they later detained the man until police arrived.

The man is being held without bond. He was serving prison time on a drug-related conviction, according Department of Corrections records reported by the Tribune.

While it may seem strange that an inmate was helping to fight a wildfire, it is not an uncommon occurrence.

Newsweek documented inmates assigned to help battle California's wildfires. They are paid $2 per day and an extra $1 per hour when fighting an active fire.

The Utah wildfire has been burning about 50 miles south of Salt Lake City since August 4 and has destroyed nearly 30,000 acres, according to the Tribune. State fire officials have said the fire is 80 percent contained.