Updated Wednesday, April 20, 2:10 p.m. EDT: Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette announced Wednesday that charges have been filed against three people directly involved in the Flint water crisis that has led to a number of health problems for Flint residents. Schuette charged Mike Glasgow, 40, the city's laboratory and water-quality supervisor; Mike Prysby, 53, a Michigan Department of Environmental Quality official; and Stephen Busch, 40, the suspended Lansing district coordinator for the DEQ’s Office of Drinking Water and Municipal Assistance, the Detroit Free Press reports.
Glasgow faces one felony and one misdemeanor charge, Prysby faces four felony charges and two misdemeanors, and Busch faces three felony charges and two misdemeanors, according to the Free Press. The felony charges include misconduct in office and conspiracy related to tampering with evidence and carry maximum penalties of up to five years in prison.
"They failed Michigan families. Indeed, they failed us all. I don't care where you live," Schuette said during a press conference, according to CNN.
Although Schuette refused to go into specifics as to what each individual did to contribute to the problem that still has Flint residents unable to use faucet water, he did note that this is just the beginning of the investigation and that no person was off the table, including Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, whom Schuette is reportedly defending in cases filed by Flint residents against the governor.
"These charges are the only beginning, and there will be more to come," Schuette said during the press conference, according to the Free Press. "That I can guarantee you."
Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette is expected to announce criminal charges Wednesday afternoon against three people involved in the Flint, Mich., water crisis.
According to the Associated Press, two state regulators and a Flint employee, all allegedly connected to wrongdoing in the city's lead-tainted-water crisis, are expected to face misdemeanor and felony charges, including "violating Michigan's drinking-water law, official misconduct, destruction of utility property and evidence tampering."
AP notes that these are the first charges but may not be the last in an investigation that is expected to broaden.
Flint has been under a state of emergency for the past four months in response to high levels of lead in its drinking water since the city in 2014 redirected its water supply from Detroit Water's Lake Huron source, a safe and tested drinking source, to the Flint River. Residents immediately began complaining that faucet water was brown and unsafe to drink and smelled bad.
Scientists were finally called to test the water in October and confirmed what many residents suspected: The water was unsafe to drink. The city switched the water supply back to the Detroit Water system in mid-October, "but state officials said this week, the city's drinking water is still not considered safe," the Detroit News reports.
In January, Schuette opened an investigation and appointed a special counsel to lead the probe because his office is also defending Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and others in lawsuits filed over the water crisis, AP reports.