Chimney Sweep

Suspected burglar who bought caught in chimney died of thermal burns and smoke inhalation

A suspected burglar who snuck into a house chimney on Saturday died of burns after the homeowner unknowingly lit the fireplace, coroner officials said.

Cody Caldwell, 19, of Huron also died of smoke inhalation, according to Fresno County coroners.

Fresno County Police Department said Caldwell climbed the chimney to break into the house and got stuck. When the homeowner returned home, he lit a small flame in the fireplace, MPs said.

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The homeowner didn’t know Caldwell was in the chimney before starting the fire, MPs said.

After lighting the fire, the homeowner heard Caldwell’s screams. When the house went up in smoke, the homeowner tried to put out the fire.

Ten minutes later, Caldwell was still moving, breathing in the chimney.

The fire department was finally able to dismantle the chimney to get to Caldwell.

But by the time they got to Caldwell he was dead, the MPs said.

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