Schuette Charges Three with Multiple Felonies in First Stage of Flint Water Crisis Investigation

April 20, 2016

FLINT, MI — Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette today announced that he filed a total of 13 felony charges and 5 misdemeanor charges against two state officials and one city official as a result of their actions in the Flint water contamination crisis currently gripping the city. 

Charges were filed this morning in the Genesee County 67th District Court in Flint against the following three individuals:

  • Stephen Busch, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality District 8 Water Supervisor (3 felonies, 2 misdemeanor)
  • Michael Prysby, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality District 8 Water Engineer (4 felonies, 2 misdemeanor)
  • Michael Glasgow, City of Flint Laboratory and Water Quality Supervisor (1 felony, 1 misdemeanor)

The maximum sentences for each of the felonies, which are summarized below, range from 4-5 years in prison, with fines for each in a range between $5,000-$10,000.

The charges are the first announced as a result of Schuette’s investigation into the crisis, which is being conducted by Special Prosecutor Todd Flood, Chief Investigator Andy Arena, and Deputy Chief Investigator Ellis Stafford.  Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton is also working with Schuette on the investigation and joined Schuette in Flint for today’s announcement. 

Schuette noted the investigation remains fully active and that the charges filed today do not preclude additional charges at a later date.   

The charges include:

Stephen Busch and Michael Prysby:

COUNT 1 DEFENDANTS (01) (02) – COMMON LAW OFFENSES – MISCONDUCT IN OFFICE

did between February 2015 and November 2015, commit misconduct in office, an indictable offense at common law, by willfully and knowingly misleading federal regulatory officials in the Environmental Protection Agency, including, but not limited to, Miguel Del Toral, and/or Genesee County Health Department officials, including, but not limited to, James Henry, in violation of his duty to provide clean and safe drinking water to the citizens of the County of Genesee, State of Michigan and to protect the public health; contrary to MCL 750.505. [750.505]

FELONY: 5 Years and/or $10,000.00

COUNT 3 DEFENDANTS (01) (02) – CONSPIRACY - TAMPERING WITH EVIDENCE

did, between on or about January 2015, through November 2015, unlawfully conspire, combine, confederate and agree together with persons, both known and unknown to the People of the State of Michigan, to commit an offense prohibited by law, to wit: Tampering with Evidence, including but not limited to manipulating monitoring reports mandated by law; contrary to MCL 750.157a. [750.483A6A][C]

FELONY: 4 Years and/or $10,000.00

COUNT 4 DEFENDANTS (01) (02) – TAMPERING WITH EVIDENCE

did knowingly and intentionally remove, alter, conceal, destroy, or otherwise tamper with evidence, to wit: reports entitled “Lead and Copper Report and Consumer Notice of Lead Result” dated February 27, 2015 and/or July 28, 2015 and/or August 20, 2015; contrary to MCL 750.483a(6)(a). [750.483A6A]

FELONY: 4 Years and/or $5,000.00

COUNT 5 DEFENDANTS (01) (02) – TREATMENT VIOLATION - MICHIGAN SAFE DRINKING WATER ACT

did cease the utilization of optimal corrosion control treatment at the Flint Water Treatment Plant after the Plant switched to the Flint River as a water source and/or did refuse to mandate optimized corrosion control treatment at the Flint Water Treatment Plant in a timely manner after the lead action level was exceeded; contrary to MCL 325.1001. [325.1001]

MISDEMEANOR: 1 Year and/or $5,000.00 for each day of violation

COUNT 6 DEFENDANTS (01) (02) – MONITORING VIOLATION - MICHIGAN SAFE DRINKING WATER ACT

did improperly manipulate the collection of water samples by directing residents to “pre-flush” their taps by running the water for five minutes the night before drawing a water sample and/or did fail to collect required samples included in the Tier 1 category of serviced lines and/or did remove test results from samples to be included in the Lead and Copper Report and Consumer Notice of Lead Result; contrary to MCL 325.1001. [325.1001]

MISDEMEANOR: 1 Year and/or $5,000.00 for each day of violation

Additional charge against Michael Prysby:

COUNT 2 DEFENDANT (02) – COMMON LAW OFFENSES – MISCONDUCT IN OFFICE

did, on or about April 4, 2014, commit misconduct in office, an indictable offense at common law, by authorizing a permit to the Flint Water Treatment Plant knowing the Flint Water Treatment Plant was deficient in its ability to provide clean and safe drinking water for the citizens of the County of Genesee, State of Michigan; contrary to MCL 750.505. [750.505]

FELONY: 5 Years and/or $10,000.00

Michael Glasgow:

COUNT 7 DEFENDANT (03) – TAMPERING WITH EVIDENCE

did knowingly and intentionally remove, alter, conceal, destroy, or otherwise tamper with evidence to be offered in an official proceeding, to wit: the report entitled “Lead and Copper Report and Consumer Notice of Lead Result” dated February 27, 2015 and/or July 28, 2015 and/or August 20, 2015; contrary to MCL 750.483a(6)(a). [750.483A6A]

FELONY: 4 Years and/or $5,000.00

COUNT 8 DEFENDANT (03) – WILLFUL NEGLECT OF DUTY

did willfully neglect to perform a duty enjoined upon him by Michigan Safe Drinking Water Act, to wit: by failing to perform the duties of an F-1 Certified Operator employed by the Flint Water Treatment Plant; contrary to MCL 750.478. [750.478]

MISDEMEANOR: 1 Year and/or $1,000.00

Comments offered at today’s announcement: 

Attorney General Bill Schuette:

“The justice system in Michigan is not rigged. Anyone that says Michigan has a wink and nod justice system is wrong. It doesn’t matter who you are, what you do, if you break the law there will be consequences.”

“So many things went so terribly wrong in Flint. I made a decision that I must investigate what went wrong. It is my job as Attorney General to protect the citizens of Michigan. The citizens of Flint deserve that, the citizens of Michigan deserve that. This investigation is ongoing, it is broad, detailed and comprehensive."

“What happened here in Flint is a tragedy, and we will continue to investigate all information that comes our way. This is not something I take lightly."

Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton:

“We are working closely together on this investigation because the people of Flint deserve nothing less than the truth and we will keep working until we get to the bottom of this.”

Mug shot of GlasgowMug shot of Prysby

        GLASGOW                   PRYSBY

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