Police: Teens try to steal embalming fluid from funeral home

Thieves accidentally take wrong chemical

GALVESTON - Two teens are in police custody after officials say they tried to steal embalming fluid from a Galveston funeral home.

Police said 19-year-old Joshua Nismonger and a 16-year-old boy broke in to the Carnes Brothers Funeral Home around 3 a.m. Wednesday.

The teens first broke in to an employee vehicle and stole the keys to the funeral home, according to investigators.

Investigators also said when Nismonger entered the funeral home, the alarmed sounded. A neighbor heard the alarm and immediately called 911.

When police arrived, they found Nismonger trying to steal embalming fluid and a laptop computer.

Embalming fluid is a chemical funeral home director's use to prepare bodies before a service.

Investigators said the chemical can be used by marijuana users.

"The illicit activity used with it is usually sprinkled over marijuana, said Galveston Police Chief Henry Porretto. "Some people call it 'fry' and it's an additive to enhance the marijuana."

Although the suspects intended to steal embalming fluid, Rusty Carnes, the owner of the funeral home said they didn't realize what they were actually taking was a highly flammable dry hair cleaner.

"If they smoked it, it would have caught their face on fire," said Rusty.

Nismonger is charged with burglary of a building and is being held in the Galveston County Jail with a $2,000 bond.

The 16-year-old is being held in the juvenile justice center.

Carnes said this was the first break-in in his 23 years in the funeral business.

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