Madison man arrested following discovery of volatile chemicals

MADISON (WKOW) -- Police have arrested a man as part of their investigation into an apartment filled with volatile chemicals that forced the evacuation of 25 families.

Brian N. Campbell, 30, Madison, faces charges of second-degree reckless endangering safety.

Residents were not allowed back into their homes Wednesday morning as experts continued to evaluate chemicals found inside an apartment.

The Madison Police Department and Madison Fire Department were called about 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018 to the building on Timber Lake Trail following complaints about an odor.

Campbell is the resident of the apartment that contained chemicals that were deemed to have created a potentially volatile situation.

Police say evidence does not suggest this was a meth lab, but what exactly the suspect was doing with the materials has not been thoroughly evaluated.

Subject matter experts from several federal agencies are collaborating to identify the chemicals and their potential use.

Madison Fire Chief Steve Davis said upon entering the apartment, they found numerous chemicals and called in additional resources.

"When we first got there, there was enough sophistication that it had all the potential to be something flammable or could be a bomb,"  Madison Police Chief Mike Koval said during a Tuesday evening news conference.

About 4:30 p.m. the bomb squad responded to assess the situation, Koval said.

"There was a lot of stuff, disheveled, and a lot of chemicals," Koval said.

Koval said they are taking their time to investigate.

"It could be anything from drug distribution, or could it be for bombs, or could it be for something unknown," Koval said.

They currently have a 30-year-old male in custody as a person of interest.

Altogether, 25 households have been evacuated and have been moved off site, Davis said.

"There was such a mix of chemicals and flammable liquids that usually aren't seen together," Davis said.

Officials are receiving assistance from the FBI, state Department of Criminal Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

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