A former funeral home employee was ordered Wednesday to stand trial on charges he murdered a rival mortician in what is believed to be the nation's first oleander poisoning prosecution.

Following a preliminary hearing, David Wayne Sconce, 33, of Pasadena was ordered to stand trial on one count of murder with special circumstance allegations - murder by poisoning - that qualify him for a possible death penalty.He is charged with using the lethal leaves of the oleander plant to poison Timothy R. Waters, 24, a Burbank mortician, in 1985, to keep Waters from exposing activities at Sconce's parents' Lamb Funeral home.