3 years later, no one is in jail over the Flint water crisis

Flint city water treatment plant, Photo Date: Feb 3, 2016 / Photo: Americans LeDuff / Youtube / MGN
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FLINT (AP) (1/18/2019) - Some people in Flint are upset over a parade of plea deals in the Flint water scandal, three years after authorities said the lead crisis would put officials in prison.

No one is behind bars. Seven of 15 defendants have pleaded no contest to misdemeanors. Their records will be scrubbed if they cooperate with a prosecutor.

Flint was one of the worst man-made environmental disasters in U.S. history. The city pulled water from a river in 2014 and 2015 without treating it to reduce corrosion. Lead leached from pipes.

Three Michigan regulators recently accepted plea deals, including Liane Shekter Smith, who was the state's head of drinking water. LeeAnne Walters, who helped expose the lead crisis, says she's "furious."

Flint water investigator Andy Arena says cooperation will help build new cases.

Fifteen people have been charged in an investigation of how Flint's water became contaminated with lead in 2014-2015 and a related outbreak of Legionnaires' disease.

Seven people have pleaded no contest to misdemeanors in deals that will leave them without a criminal record.

-- Michael Prysby, Stephen Busch, Liane Shekter Smith, Adam Rosenthal, all from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.

-- Mike Glasgow and Daugherty "Duffy" Johnson, who both worked for the city of Flint.

-- Corinne Miller of the state Department of Health and Human Services.

Charges are pending against eight people:

-- Nick Lyon, former director of the state health department. Involuntary manslaughter, misconduct in office. His case has been bound over to trial, but he is appealing that ruling.

-- Dr. Eden Wells, former Michigan chief medical executive. Involuntary manslaughter, obstructing justice, lying, misconduct in office. Her case has been bound over to trial, but she plans to appeal that ruling.

-- Nancy Peeler and Robert Scott of the state health department. Misconduct in office, conspiracy.

-- Patrick Cook of the Department of Environmental Quality. Misconduct in office, conspiracy.

-- Gerald Ambrose, former Flint emergency manager. Conspiracy, misconduct in office, false pretenses.

-- Darnell Earley, former Flint emergency manager. Involuntary manslaughter, conspiracy, misconduct in office.

-- Howard Croft, former director of Flint public works. Involuntary manslaughter, conspiracy.

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