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Three Michigan Officials Face Criminal Charges for Flint Water Crisis

If convicted, the three men could face up to five years in prison.
Three Michigan Officials Face Criminal Charges for Flint Water Crisis
Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Two years after the beginnings of the Flint water crisis, three Michigan officials are being held responsible for the lead poisoning.

Flint water quality supervisor Mike Glasgow, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) official Michael Prysby and former MDEQ Lansing district coordinator Stephen Busch all face multiple charges, reports ThinkProgress. Noticeably missing from the line-up, however, is Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder.

Seven Families in Flint File Class-Action Lawsuit Over Lead-Poisoned Water

“If people broke the law, they need to be held accountable—period,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director of the communications agency Progress Michigan, in a statement. “However, the person who has continued to evade accountability in the midst of this crisis is Gov. Rick Snyder, who ushered in unaccountable emergency managers whose only focus was to cut costs at any cost…It was his administration that ushered in this crisis through policies he chose to implement and a governing culture that allowed these abuses to continue for so long.”

Prysby faces six counts of criminal charges—the most out of the three men—that include tampering with evidence, misconduct in office and engaging in treatment violation. If convicted, the officials could serve up to five years in prison.

Flint Task Force Concludes That Emergency Managers ‘Contributed to the Crisis’

More than 8,000 children have been exposed to lead-ridden water since the city switched its water source from Lake Huron to the Flint River in effort to cut costs. Fifty families have filed lawsuits against the city, demanding that someone be held accountable for the crisis. Both the federal and state governments have allocated millions of dollars to replace the corroded pipes, and the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform is currently investigating the crisis.

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