In scene reminiscent of Breaking Bad, St. Paul police bust mobile meth lab

In Breaking Bad, Walter and Jesse begin their meth-cooking career by cooking in the back of an RV in New Mexico.

The hit show may have inspired copycat cookers right here in the Twin Cities, as St. Paul police yesterday arrested two men suspected of cooking meth in the back of an SUV.

Following up on a call about a suspicious vehicle, police found two men inside a GMC Jimmy in the Dayton's Bluff area. Police handcuffed the men and searched the vehicle after an officer spotted a handgun poking out from under the front passenger seat.

According to the Pioneer Press, inside the vehicle police found several chemical bottles, a butane torch, measuring spoons, and other drug-related items. They didn't find methamphetamine but believe the SUV may have been a mobile lab because of the presence of numerous chemicals used to make the drug.

Allen Haugen, 32, of St. Paul, and Patrick Reiman, 25, of Excelsior, were arrested on suspicion of possession of controlled substances and possession of a firearm by an ineligible person. They're being held in Ramsey County Jail but neither has yet been charged.

Sergeant Paul Paulos of the St. Paul Police Department told the PiPress that finding mobile meth labs isn't "an everyday occurrence." He characterized such operations as "extremely dangerous" whether at home or on the road due to the possibility the combustible chemicals used to cook meth might cause an explosion.

Kentucky police found a meth lab in a 1991 Accord. Seriously!
Kentucky police found a meth lab in a 1991 Accord. Seriously!

Mobile operations have recently been discovered in other parts of the country. In one recent and relatively high-profile case, a 1991 Honda housing a mobile meth lab crashed into a tree in Kentucky "for unknown reason," killing one passenger and seriously injuring two others. Might we be so bold to suggest the crash had something to do with the presence of a drug cooking operation in a car barely big enough to comfortably accommodate four average-sized people?

Perhaps both the St. Paul and Kentucky mishaps could've been avoided had the mobile meth cookers studied Breaking Bad a little closer. After all, Walt and Jesse never would've cooked while driving, nor would they have gotten caught chilling in their RV in an urban area. It's all about the details!

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