“Nazi Meth:” First day of trial for Bateman


Kaela McKim

The first day of trial for Terry David Bateman is through with several testimonies heard, such as his supposed accomplice, Bradley Rowland

The “Breaking Bad” case has finally gone to trial with today being the first day of proceedings for Terry David Bateman.
Several witnesses spoke today, including his former colleague and supposed accomplice, Bradley Rowland. In true Jessie Pinkman vs. Walter White fashion, Rowland took the stand first to describe the processes employed by Bateman and himself in the manufacturing of methamphetamine as well as a timeline of events that starts as early as August of 2016, when Bateman is said to have begun cooking.
In the defense’s opening statement, they claimed that Bateman, along with the public, are the victims of Rowland’s conduct. They went on to explain that before Rowland arrived at the university in 2014, Bateman cared deeply for the school, his family and his job.
“He bleeds Reddie red,” said Bateman’s defense attorney Bill James.
According to the defense, Rowland, at one time, suggested starting a “Breaking Bad” themed course at Henderson. Bateman supposedly shot down the idea on the grounds that the show featured “antiquated” methods and that it would be equivalent to “Nazi meth.”
Rowland testified that he began using meth with Bateman in November 2016 and soon after began to help in the lab, starting by cleaning the equipment and slowly working more and more into the synthesis as time progressed.
Allegedly, during the Christmas break of 2014, Bateman conducted an inventory of the stockroom in the chemistry department of the university. He told Rowland and the other professors that he’d found enough phenylacetic acid to make “enough methamphetamine for 30 years.” The drum of acid was used completely by the fall of 2017.
The defense argued that Rowland probably never made usable meth, and that his background as a physical chemist is the reason that the spill took place. Bateman, on the other hand, is an organic chemist, and would be much more likely to create a high quality batch without getting caught. During the investigation, no meth was found in solid or powder form.
Rowland claimed during his testimony that the reason for the October 7, 2019 spill of benzoyl chloride is because he used a condenser tube that was too narrow. The students who first smelled the odor and informed the two professors of the spill gave their testimonies, all saying that Rowland and Bateman showed up and that Bateman left before Rowland.
Although Rowland has not yet taken a plea bargain, during cross-examination, he admitted that he was guilty alongside Bateman.
The defense is hoping to bank the case on a few items found in Bateman’s office during the initial search. A safe was found that used to belong to Rowland, full of glass beakers and pens used for smoking. They are claiming that Bateman had no access to the safe and did not know the code, while also suggesting that the three pens, which all have Texas addresses written on them, belonged to Rowland as well.
Before coming to teach at Henderson, Rowland taught and studied at several institutions in Texas, and Bateman had not lived in Texas since he was a teenager.
“The safe is the key to the case,” said James.
The trial will resume tomorrow at 8:30 a.m.