Not Santa! Burglar hiding in chimney dies when homeowners light fire

It was a little early to be the visitor most people expect to come down their chimney this time of year.

A California burglar died Saturday after getting stuck in the chimney of his intended victim, KFSN reported.

Photo credit Fresno County Sheriff's office.
Photo credit Fresno County Sheriff’s office.

The homeowner told police he heard someone scream after lighting a fire in his fireplace.

He rushed to extinguish the fire and called 911 as the house filled with smoke, according to KFSN.

Fresno County Sheriff’s deputies, fire and rescue arrived within approximately 10 minutes and began the rescue operation.

Photo credit Fresno County Sheriff's office.
Photo credit Fresno County Sheriff’s office.

KFSN reported that the suspected burglar was alive and moving during the rescue attempt as first responders used jackhammers to break into the chimney.

When they got to the suspect however, he was already dead.

Photo credit Jesse Franz / KSEE 24.
Photo credit Jesse Franz / KSEE 24.

The preliminary investigation discovered the man had got himself stuck in the chimney the night prior as he attempted to burglarize the house when no one was home.

An investigation into the cause of death and the burglar’s identity is ongoing.

Carmine Sabia

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