Update 10:44 a.m. It seems like this tale of a Midtown meth bust isn't so much the stuff of Breaking Bad as it one more of those New York City nightmare neighbors. Police sources are telling NBC New York that there was nothing criminal in the Midtown Manhattan apartment everyone thought to be a meth lab. A law enforcement source said early Tuesday that the investigation found a man in the apartment was manufacturing legal bath salts. No charges were filed and police said the investigation revealed no criminality," NBC reported.
Police invaded and evacuated two floors in a four-story apartment building in Hell's Kitchen after neighbors complained that a man was cooking meth on the third floor. The building's residents said that they'd noticed a toxic smell that burned their eyes coming from the apartment and suspected that he had hazardous chemicals inside. After a call around 6:30 p.m., in swarmed the bomb squad and a host of officers. Local media reports that their investigation "remained inconclusive late Monday night," but a 50-year-old man is being questioned in the matter.
Regardless of whether or not this guy was actually making drugs in his Hell's Kitchen apartment, one fact is resoundingly true: Midtown Manhattan is a terrible place to set up a meth lab. The main reason is illustrated in the dozens of people who were evacuated from their homes for fear of an explosion. Cooking meth is really dangerous, and cooking meth in a densely populated urban area is even more dangerous. As an A&E documentary on the drug explains, "Some of the ingredients to make meth are highly explosive -- they're the same ingredients used to make bombs." Bombs and New York City don't mix! (Irony and New York City, however, do.)