Meth lab found on playground at Murfreesboro school - WSMV Channel 4

Meth lab found on playground at Murfreesboro school

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MURFREESBORO, TN (WSMV) -

It was a scary afternoon for a group of first-graders Tuesday after their teacher found remnants of a mobile meth lab right on the playground. It appears one of the ingredients used to make methamphetamine was put there by school officials to prevent grass from growing in the mulch.

The Mitchell Neilson Primary School teacher discovered the remnants when she took her class out for recess around lunchtime.

"Meth-making material that was part of a shake-and-bake meth lab was discovered on the school playground," said Sgt. Kyle Evans, Murfreesboro police spokesman.

Not knowing what it was, the teacher took the remnants, a soda bottle and plastic tubing, to an assistant principal's office. The school resources officer took it to a safe location behind the school where Hazmat crews were called to check it out.

"Meth labs are scary enough, but the fact that someone would bring one on a school campus is a dangerous situation," Evans said.

School officials said no student came in contact with the meth-making material.

"The good news out of this is no children were exposed," said Lisa Trail, Murfreesboro City Schools spokeswoman.

School officials told police the rock salt that was found on the playground was put there by the maintenance staff to try and prevent weeds and grass from growing in the mulch. Police said rock salt is one of the components used to make meth.

"It is possible the person making the meth knew this and came here to seek out the rock salt to make the drug," Evans said.

Parents arrived at dismissal to find police cars and crime tape around the playground closest to West Clark Boulevard and left to wonder what was going on.

"I'm obviously very concerned because safety is our primary concern at the school," said grandparent Lisa Ford.

"Prior to it being found, how do they know no other child was exposed to it?" asked parent Stephany Chivers.

The Tennessee Methamphetamine Task Force was called in to remove what was left of the shake-and-bake meth lab. The playground and the assistant principal's desk were washed down with soap and water.

School officials believe this was an isolated incident.

"To the best of my knowledge, this is the first time we've had anything like this happen on one of our campus," Trail said. "We hope it's the last time, but this is a learning experience."

School officials say it was too late in the day to send letters home to parents explaining what happened, so they expect to spend the rest of the afternoon and evening calling parents by phone.

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