Investigators search abandoned lab where spilled mercury was stolen

HOUSTON – Investigators on Friday searched the abandoned Houston lab from where a teen is accused of stealing mercury and then spilling it in several locations.

Video from SKY 2 showed people in protective gear walking near the Geochem Laboratories building in west Houston. A couple of blue barrels were also seen sitting in front of a large truck. Yellow caution tape was also seen around the building.

Christopher Melder, 19, is accused of stealing 11 pounds of the liquid metal from the lab last week and then going to a nearby Walmart and Shell gas station to sell small amounts of it for $20 each. Investigators have said that Melder inadvertently spilled the chemical in several places in the process of trying to sell it, which resulted in a massive decontamination effort that included dozens of people and several businesses.

Houston police would only confirm that Friday’s investigation is connected to the spills.

Melder is being held in jail on a $150,000 bond.

This is a developing story.

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