Judge raises bond to $150K for man accused of spilling mercury

Christopher Melder appears in court Dec. 18, 2019.
Christopher Melder appears in court Dec. 18, 2019. (KPRC 2)

HOUSTON – The man accused of spilling mercury in four separate locations in west Houston and Spring appeared in court Wednesday morning.

Christopher Melder, 19, was arrested and charged after trace amounts of mercury were spilled in three locations in west Houston, which led to dozens of people having to be decontaminated and the area being closed.

In court Wednesday, a judge raised Melder’s bond to $150,000 for three charges, including burglary and unlawful disposal of hazardous material.

It is unclear what the third charge is for.

In an exclusive interview with KPRC 2, Melder said he found the mercury at an abandoned lab, and he only knew what it was because it was labeled.

Melder said his friends "called it liquid silver and said it was cool to play with.”

“I didn’t go far in school and didn’t know it was bad,” Melder said, adding that he wasn’t trying to harm anybody. “I sold it, but only made 40 bucks off of it.”

According to Melder, he admitted to accidentally spilling the mercury on the same day he sold it.

For more on the spills and what people can do if they may have been exposed to mercury, go to our previous KPRC 2 report.

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