Tip leads to alleged meth lab operation

Published 2:35 pm Thursday, October 25, 2012

An anonymous tip has allegedly ended a portable meth lab operation in Austin.

According to the police report, Austin police received the tip that two men, Matthew Koch, 20, and Daniel Enfield, 19, were skateboarding between Wildwood and Todd Park with a backpack that contained meth-making ingredients and supplies.

An officer found both men near Mill Pond on Main Street, stopped them at the 500 block of North Main Street and searched their backpack at about 1 a.m. Wednesday. The officer allegedly found Drano, several coffee filters and tinfoil. More officers arrived, arrested both men and placed them in the Mower County Jail.

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The Southeast Minnesota Narcotics and Gang Task Force and lab technicians were contacted for cleanup. Two packets of tinfoil reportedly tested positive for meth. After an interview, Enfield allegedly told authorities the location of more meth-making ingredients in a wooded area between Hormel’s corporate offices and woods near Todd Park. While officers were unable to locate the chemicals, Enfield later allegedly showed them the location. Officers also reportedly learned about a meth-making explosion in that area and that Koch may have received burns associated with that incident. Officers took Koch to Mayo Clinic Health System in Austin where he was treated for chemical burns and taken back to the jail.

The case has been forwarded to the Mower County Attorney’s office. Police Chief Brian Krueger said lab technicians removed all of the meth-making ingredients from the woods and there is no threat to public safety.