The drone was found in his van and seized.
Gene Alan Carpenter, a 54-year-old from Prescott Valley, is accused of endangering 14 aircraft and ground personnel with a "substantial risk of imminent death or physical injury" by flying a drone near or over the fire.
It's unclear if Carpenter has an attorney.
The wildfire has been burning in the dense Prescott National Forest and around Prescott, a mountain city about 100 miles north of Phoenix. Fire crews continue to work the northern and western flanks of the fire, which now has a perimeter of 62 miles.
An Arizona man has been arrested and charged with more than a dozen felonies after he allegedly flew his drone too close to aircraft battling a fire, briefly preventing officials from containing the blaze. Thousands of people have been forced out of their homes.
A drone was also spotted on Thursday in the same airspace as 14 firefighting aircraft, including five helicopters, three large air tankers, and five heavy air tankers. All firefighting aircraft had to be grounded for about an hour on Wednesday, June 28. Over 12-hundred firefighters remain working on the fire. Lawmakers have called for more oversight and awareness as the consumer technology gets cheaper and more accessible.
Detectives are meeting with federal officials Monday to discuss additional charges based on the federal statutes regarding temporary flight restrictions. The FAA, citing the ongoing investigation, declined to comment on the case.