MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A 30-year-old man is in custody and charged with a felony after police say he was caught cooking meth in a storage facility in St. Paul.
According to the criminal complaint, Matthew Lee Krause was in the middle of cooking methamphetamine on May 9 in a storage locker at the Minikahda Storage facility at 1441 Hunting Valley Road when he opened the door and saw police officers.
Officers had responded to a report of a man who was trying to recover tools that Krause had allegedly stolen. He told police there would be trouble if Krause saw him because he had a rifle or a shotgun. The man told police Krause had been cooking meth.
When Krause opened the door, officers could see a full meth lab in plain view and a woman asleep in a chair. Krause and the woman were taken into custody.
Krause was a student at the University of Minnesota from fall of 2010 to spring 2013. He did not earn a degree and is not currently enrolled, according to university officials.
Krause was also employed in the College of Biological Sciences as an undergraduate research assistant in plant biology. His employment ended in June of last year.
Police found a set of several master keys to the university in Krause’s 2001 Jeep Cherokee, along with pseudoephedrine.
Officers were told he cooked meth in a lab on campus in the past and stole property from the university, including chemicals. University of Minnesota Police are investigating those claims and allegations.
After obtaining a search warrant of the storage unit, officers found several chemicals, filters and glassware. They also learned Krause rented four additional storage lockers at the facility, which is two miles away from campus. He also appeared to be living there.
Two separate Pyrex 500 mL beakers that contained fluid were tested and both were positive for methamphetamine.
Ramsey County Attorney John Choi says it’s possible that Krause was involved in more than the manufacturing of meth.
“There’s a presumption he was engaged in some sort of distribution, or dealing as well,” Choi said.
Michael Paul, who lives near the storage facility, says there has been a rash of thefts in his neighborhood.
“We’ve had stuff stolen,” Paul said. “Who knows, it could have been the same person.”
The investigation will continue to determine the quantity of methamphetamine being produced.