Sheriff: Meth Lab Exploded While Infant Inside Home

Columbia, SC --

It happened at the Alpine Regency Mobile Home Park, which is just of Alpine Road.

A spokesperson for the Richland County Sheriff's Department, citing a manager of the mobile home park, said the mobile it was built in the 1970's. Neighbors said not in the 40 years since then have they ever seen anything like they did Tuesday.

"It's a very dangerous thing to do, as you know, and of course, the result you see here is an explosion," said Sgt. Curtis Wilson, a Public Information Officer for the Richland Sheriff's Department.

For Jasmine Taylor, who lives across a cul-de-sac from where the explosion happened, the fact her neighbors are now accused of cooking meth is what shocks her.

"Nothing has happened like this before," Taylor said. She said it was the fact that "your neighbors that are close to you would do something like that when there's a lot of kids around here."

According to Richland Deputies, the explosion happened at about 8 a.m. Tuesday. That's when they say 20-year-old William Tenuto was cooking meth inside. Two other adults and an infant were inside as well, Wilson said.

Tenuto was driven to the hospital after someone in the home called a friend, but deputies are still looking for the two adults and the baby.

"We're not sure if the infant suffered any injuries as a result of the meth explosion, or even inhaled any of the fumes at this time," Wilson said, "Again, we're looking for this vehicle."

Taylor has four kids at home herself. She said many of the neighborhood kids spend their time playing in the area, as well. That area has been cleared by hazardous material crews, but Taylor said she hopes the neighbors do not return.

"Pray for them and hope they not do it again," she said. "That everything's okay now, and they won't do it again. You never know what happens next time."

Tenuto will be charged with manufacturing methamphetamine, unlawful distribution of its waste, and a violation of the Hazardous Waste Management Act, a news release from the Richland County Sheriff's Department said.

Wilson said the remaining two adults are not currently suspects, but they would like to talk with them. They are believed to be traveling with the child in a silver 4-door Pontiac.


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