Merced Man Arrested For Stealing Cremation Urns - KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

Merced Man Arrested For Stealing Cremation Urns

MERCED, Calif. (KMPH) -

It's a ghoulish crime, that took place two months ago at a Merced cemetery. In May two thieves broke into Evergreen Memorial Cemetery in Merced and stole eleven urns.  Police say they wanted the urns so they could recycle the metal.

On Friday 58 year old Richard Madsen was taken into custody.   Police say he confessed to the crime.  Meantime an arrest warrant has also been issued for 55 year old Marc Reid.

Lt. Tom Trindad is spokesperson for the Merced Police Department.  "The fact that they disturbed somebody's final resting place and upset all these families that's the thing that you can't put a price on."

After stealing the urns from the cemetery police say the thieves carelessly discarded the remains into a garbage can.  Madsen now faces three felony charges.   Grand theft, possession of stolen property and removing remains that have been interned in a cemetery.

Lt. Trindad says it is a first for Merced. "It's unique in the fact that most people honor the sacred area of the cemetery.   Usually they do not get disturbed.   It's rare for that to occur."

But it did happen for no more than fifty pounds of scrap metal.  If you have any information on this case you are asked to call the Merced police tipster line at 209–385–4725.

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