Florida man gets stuck in chimney during attempted burglary

“There is a chance he could have died,” says Naples detective.
By Evan Bleier   |   Nov. 11, 2013 at 12:50 PM   |   Comments

(UPI) -- A Florida man who was doing a mean-spirited Santa Claus impression might be spending Christmas behind bars after getting caught in the chimney of a Naples home during an attempted burglary.

Richard Tyler Brandon, 25, got trapped in a chimney early Wednesday morning after running out of cash during a night out. His friend, Derek Grenfell, alerted two Naples police officers about the situation after it became apparent Brandon was stuck.

A team of police officers and local fire department officials broke into the home and saw Brandon’s foot hanging in the fireplace.

“I said, ‘Dude, you’re not Santa Claus, what are you doing?’” Grenfell reportedly said to the police.

It took two hours, but Brandon was freed from the chimney and taken to the hospital for treatment of issues including leg pain and trouble breathing. It could have been worse.

“There is a chance he could have died,” said Naples Detective Robert Young. “That space he was jammed into was really tight. He couldn’t move.”

Brandon was hit with two burglary charges and Grenfell was charged as an accessory to the crime after the fact.

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