‘Chemicals piled from floor to ceiling’ at cottage of accused eye doctor: police | CTV News

A former eye doctor faces two charges in a Halifax court as police continue to examine a “volatile” chemical stash at a nearby cottage where they say chemicals were stored “from floor to ceiling.”

Cole Harbour, N.S. resident Christopher Burton Phillips, 42, appeared in court Friday on charges of uttering threats and possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose. Phillips was arrested in Ottawa on Wednesday after he triggered an evacuation at a hotel while a Canada-wide warrant was out for his arrest. Police have also linked him to two incidents that prompted evacuations near Halifax on Tuesday.

One of those evacuation orders remains in effect at a cottage outside Halifax, where police say Phillips is storing a large quantity of unlabelled chemicals that continue to pose a fire risk to the surrounding area.

Chief Supt. Roland Wells says investigators are slowly combing over a “cottage full of chemicals in Grand Desert,” where police have called in chemists, fire crews and other experts to help with the “volatile” situation.

“Within the cottage is a variety of containers filled with chemicals stacked from floor to ceiling,” Wells told reporters Friday afternoon. “Many of these chemicals are unstable.”

Wells added that some of the chemicals appear to be degrading, which would indicate they have been there for some time. “I don’t think any of us have ever seen this volume of chemicals,” he saud,

Wells also confirmed that police have recovered an unspecified amount of osmium tetroxide, a highly toxic chemical that triggered an evacuation in a Cole Harbour, N.S. neighbourhood Tuesday.

Gosia Phillips reportedly called police on Tuesday to inform them that her husband was driving to Ottawa, prompting the Canada-wide warrant for his arrest.


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