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I missed it the first time I watched the series but on a second watching I just noticed after Walt goes missing (taken by Tuco), Hank goes to Walt's house with the APD detective to ask Skyler some questions.

Just before he goes inside the house he feels around the car and grabs a magnetic device from underneath the right wheel arch. This never gets mentioned again.

Considering this is so early in the series it raises a lot of questions for me:

  1. Who put the tracker there? It probably wasn't Tuco because he used Jesse to lead him to Walt.
  2. If it was Hank, why? Did he suspect Walt so early on?

We know Hank likes putting GPS trackers on people he suspects but the way Hank feels around the car suggests he doesn't know where exactly it's placed, suggesting it wasn't him that put it there (unless he just forgot).

Could it be that Hank had Walt sussed from the start and discovering Gale's book with the WW dedication just confirmed what he always suspected?

Hanks retrieves the GPS tracker

Here's the thing he retrieves from the car:

Thing under car

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It happens in S2E2 (grilled) at around 00:05:30. I've added a photo of the object. It doesn't look like a key. – Matt Harrison Jul 15 '14 at 8:55
@AndrewThompson I think you might be right. Skyler gets the thing in Box Cutter and then moves Walt's car and then puts it back. Suggesting it's a spare key. – Matt Harrison Jul 15 '14 at 9:22
"It doesn't look like a key." I am in agreement there, but then, wouldn't it be a 'magnetic key case' as opposed to (just) a key? – Andrew Thompson Jul 15 '14 at 9:54
So spare key is the best bet you think?? – user18872 Feb 12 '15 at 19:32
up vote 14 down vote accepted

I was watching the series again the other day and noticed that Skyler removed a key from inside that wheel arch. It was the morning after Victor abducts Walt to take him to Fring's meth lab to kill him (much later than when Walt worked with/was abducted by Tuco, obviously). I think it is just that key that Hank is looking for.1

In fact, I just watched it again. Hank pulls up, he walks up beside the driver's side of the car, tries both the driver's door and the one behind it to find that both are locked, then he quickly feels around the wheel arch on the rear wheel of the driver's side, then moves to the rear wheel arch on the passenger's side and finds and removes the object.

The scene then cuts to Hank at the driver's side door, looking from inside the vehicle, as Hank is pulling it open towards him.

He then has a quick rummage through the papers in the center console and sniffs the head rest on the passenger's side of the car (mistress with perfume?).

  1. And as you noted:

    Skyler gets the thing in Box Cutter and then moves Walt's car and then puts it back. Suggesting it's a spare key.

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