Defense attorney Brian Lennon said Wednesday night: “We believe there is no evidence to support any criminal charges against Governor Snyder.” He added that state attorneys have still not provided him with any details.
Lennon said on Tuesday that the criminal case would be “heinous.” Snyder and others are scheduled to appear in court on Thursday, followed by a press conference held by Justice Department Dana Nessel and prosecutors.
In addition to Republican Snyder serving as governor from 2011 to 2018, charges are expected to be brought against others, including former officials who served as his state health director and senior adviser.
The suspected crime was dated April 25, 201
However, in one of the worst man-made environmental disasters in American history, corrosive water was not properly treated and lead was released from old pipes into the house.
Although residents eagerly pleaded with a jar of discolored stinking water, the Snyder government did not take any major action until the doctors reported that the children’s lead levels had risen about 18 months later.
Snyder promised in his 2016 national statement: “I’m sorry, I will solve the problem.”
Authorities counted at least 90 cases of Legionnaires’ disease in Genesee County, of which 12 died. Some experts have found that the chlorine in the water treatment system is not enough to control the Legionella bacteria. When the bacteria spread through the spray and cooling system, it can cause severe pneumonia.
The disaster made Flint a national symbol of government negligence. Residents were forced to line up to buy bottled water while parents feared permanent harm to their children. Lead can damage the brain and nervous system, and cause learning and behavior problems. This crisis was highlighted as an example of environmental injustice and racism.
More than 9,700 household lead service lines have been replaced. Although many distrustful residents still use filters, Flint’s water from an agent in the Detroit area has now received good reviews.
Under the leadership of two teams of prosecutors, the criminal investigation has been ongoing for five years. Todd Flood was convicted of misdemeanors from seven people, and he was deposed after being elected by the Democrat Nessel in 2019. Fadwa Hammoud subsequently dropped the charges in eight pending cases and said the investigation would restart. She said that the first team failed to collect all available evidence.
In addition, the state, Flint, a hospital and an engineering company have agreed to reach a $641 million settlement with residents over the water crisis, of which $600 million comes from Michigan. The judge said that she hopes to decide whether to approve the preliminary approval before January 21. Other lawsuits, including those against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, are pending.