Health Care

MI officials criminally charged in Flint water crisis

Michigan Health and Human Services Director Nick Lyon has been charged with involuntary manslaughter stemming from his role in the handling of the crisis, the newspaper said.

Nick Lyon, head of the Department of Health and Human Services, is charged with involuntary manslaughter and other crimes. The bacteria can thrive in mismanaged water systems, according to HuffPost.

Charges were read Wednesday in a Flint court.

Attorney General Bill Schuette's probe with Genesee (JEN'-uh-see) County Prosecutor David Leyton has already led to charges against 13 current or former government officials, including two city emergency managers appointed by Gov. Rick Snyder. Legionnaires' disease isn't caused from drinking contaminated water, in contrast with the lead poisoning in thousands of children in Flint that happened after they drank the water. "We have a lot of people to interview, a lot of evidence to get", former Wayne County prosecutor Todd Flood, who is helping lead the investigation, said when the first charges were filed past year. Dr. Eden Wells is accused of obstruction of justice and lying to a police officer. Instead, someone who inhales water vapor with the bacteria in it could get the disease. The disease killed 12 people and sickened more than 70 in 2014 and 2015, according to MLive.

Lyon was personally briefed in January 2015 but "took no action to alert the public of a deadly" outbreak until almost a year later, Seipenko said.

The attorney general's office alleges that Lyon was personally briefed on the situation in Genesse County, where figures showed the number of Legionnaire's cases was more than three times the annual average. And in March, Corrine Miller - the state's former director of disease control - was sentenced to probation and ordered to write an apology to residents after pleading no contest to willful neglect of duty.



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