Documents say Fugitives Toted Portable Meth Lab in a Backpack
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich
Newly released court documents are revealing more about the meth lab the fugitives were allegedly running out of their hotel room in Canon Colorado.
Authorities say they had a small active meth lab going that was located within a plaid backpack.
“It’s pretty simple to do a one pot meth lab,” says Allegan County Detective Craig Gardiner. “It’s a matter of mixing a few components together and then letting it sit for a little bit.”
Gardiner has been encountering the drug in Allegan County for a number of years. He says the way in which people make the drug has become a lot simpler than it was a few years ago. He says you just need some household ingredients and instructions. “We always kind of equate it to making a batch of chocolate chip cookies, if you can do that and follow a recipe, you can make meth,” says Gardiner.
According to newly released court documents from Colorado, that FOX 17 brought you exclusively Wednesday, the fugitives had done just that. When officers busted the men on the fugitive warrants, they found a backpack Greg Bradshaw had been carrying right before the bust with the meth ingredients inside.
The list included; a Mountain Dew bottle with an active chemical reaction, a second pop bottle with what appeared to be kosher salt inside, a bottle of lye drain cleaner, a container of professional drain cleaner, a spray can of tire sealant, a pack of coffee filters, ten lithium batteries, a pair of heavy duty gloves, and a stolen nickel finish revolver loaded with five rounds.
“It’s very hard to catch them because they can conceal it, either go out in the woods and make it or just let it sit somewhere, and you just never find it, they have it on their person in a backpack,” says Detective Gardiner.
FOX 17 asked if it was easy to walk around with items like those found in the backpack, undetected.
Gardiner said, “that’s correct.”
Also found at the hotel bust, two syringes, at least one of them used, a small silver metal vial with a white substance inside that looked like meth, a black folding knife, a 9 mm ammo box with marijuana in it, a glass meth pipe in a velvet bag behind the dresser and two wads of money totaling around $2,293.
The portable way of making meth actually making it easier to get quick cash on the spot and tougher to find.
“In times past when people made meth, it was a little bit bigger quantities, now it’s these what we call one pot pop bottles and they’ll maybe make one a day to one every couple of days,” says Detective Gardiner.
FOX 17 also spoke to the Western Michigan Enforcement Team, or WEMET, which says meth is on the rise in West Michigan. Detective First Lt. Mike Harvitt, MSP Police and section commander at WEMET says Allegan County is a big hot spot for the drug. He says they cover Muskegon, Ottawa and Allegan Counties. Last year they busted 73 meth labs contrasted to 1999, when a total of 18 labs were found statewide.
This year, they’ve already found 68 and are on track to beat last year’s record of 73. Of the 68 labs they discovered in the three counties so far in 2012, 63 were in Allegan County.