Flint water crisis: Six Michigan state employees charged in connection to scandal

Justin Carissimo
New York
Friday 29 July 2016 21:44 BST
(Carolyn Kaster/Associated Press)

Six former and current state officials were charged on Friday in connection to the lead contamination in Flint’s drinking water, bringing the total number officials charged to nine.

The scandal highlighted the state of America’s infrastructure crisis and worried parents across the nation due to the alarming levels of lead tested in children.

Attorney General Bill Schuette brought new misconduct charges against three employees from the Department of Environmental Quality: Liane Shekter Smith, Adam Rosenthal and Patrick Cook. He also charged three officials from the Department of Health and Human Services: Nancy Peeler, Corinne Miller and Robert Scott.

“Their offences vary but there is an overall theme and repeated pattern,” Mr. Schuette told reporters on Friday. “Each of these individuals attempted to bury, or cover up, to downplay or hide information that contradicted their own narrative their story. Their story was there was nothing wrong with Flint water and it was perfectly safe to use.”

“These individuals concealed the truth,” Mr. Schuette continued. “They were criminally wrong to do so.”

The announcement comes three months after three separate officials were charged in the water contamination crisis.

Jeff Seipenko, a special agent with the attorney general's office, said the employees effectively buried research that indicated high lead levels in children’s blood in 2014, The Detroit Free Press reports. He claims that the officials then conspired together to change lead levels and copper monitoring reports.

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