The attorney general of Michigan is set to formally charge two state employees and one city employee with involvement in contaminating the city of Flint's water supply with lead. A Fox News affiliate in Michigan is providing a live stream of the press conference, beginning at 1 p.m. EDT, and viewers can watch it here.
Stephen Busch and Mike Prysby of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality are to be charged with misconduct in office, conspiracy to tamper with evidence and tampering with evidence for claiming the city was in compliance with safety codes despite being alerted to the water contamination back in August 2015. Flint Utility Manager Mike Glasgow of the Flint water treatment plant will also be charged with willful neglect of office and tampering with evidence for allegedly changing the results of water testing to hide the lead level.
"If you have a duty, you breach that duty, and because of the gross negligence of that breach, if someone died and you can show the cause of death to that breach, you can have involuntary manslaughter," Todd Flood, a former Wayne County assistant prosecutor, said in January. "It's not far-fetched."
The Flint water crisis has attracted national attention after researchers discovered the tap water in the Michigan city was affected with dangerous levels of lead and had caused serious health problems in thousands of children. City officials changed the city’s water supply from Detroit to the Flint River in a cost-cutting move in 2014, without using proper corrosion control to prevent high levels of lead from getting into the water supply from old pipes.
The change was almost immediately visible, according to residents, who said the water was often yellow or brown and tasted odd. The city switched back to buying water from Detroit in October 2015, but the change has not taken effect across all homes and many residents still must resort to bottled water.