Gustavo Abarca Garcia, 26, was charged Tuesday with starting multiple fires over the past month along Santiago Creek in Orange County.
The homeless man has pleaded not guilty to eight felony accounts of arson and one felony account of vandalism.
The police suspect Garcia could be linked to as many as 14 fires but he is only being prosecuted for the seven fires he set in "forest and vegetation areas" along Santiago Creek in the cities of Santa Ana and Orange.
Prosecutors say one of those fires began with Garcia setting a fence ablaze, which then spread to the backyard of a home, causing $20,000 in damage to patio furniture, vegetation and a trampoline.
He faces up to 15 years and three months in prison if convicted.
Photo: Getty Images