Arson charges re-filed against Phillips - KXLH.com | Helena, Montana

Arson charges re-filed against Phillips

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Rodney Earl Phillips in court on June 6th Rodney Earl Phillips in court on June 6th

Arson charges have been re-filed against Rodney Earl Phillips in Great Falls.

The fire on Monday night at 118 9th Street South did not cause any serious injuries, but displaced two residents of an apartment building.

Court documents filed on Tuesday morning charged Phillips with two felony count of arson, but during his initial court appearance on Tuesday afternoon, the judge dismissed the charges without prejudice, meaning that the charges could be re-filed if additional evidence was discovered.

On Wednesday morning, the felony charges were again filed against Phillips.

Court documents state the Phillips claimed that someone had thrown something through his window that exploded and started the fire.

He also claimed that someone had climbed a ladder to his apartment window and used lasers to start the fire.

Court documents note that no ladders or lasers were found in the vicinity.

Fire Marshal Dirk Johnson says that the window that Phillips claimed had been shattered by someone throwing something through it was actually intact, and had been broken out only during firefighting operations.

The investigation determined that there were no ignition sources found in the area, such as an electrical outlet, appliances, etc. The investigation also determined that two other small fires had been set in a bedroom of the apartment, and they had been started on a ceramic tile floor.

RELATED: Arson charges against Phillips have been dismissed

RELATED: No serious injuries in overnight fire

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