Michigan loses appeal over former governor’s acquittal in Flint water case
The Michigan Court of Appeals on Thursday again rejected an attempt to revive charges in the Flint water scandal, ruling in favor of former Gov. Rick Snyder who was indicted on misdemeanors.
The attorney general’s office has repeatedly tried to convince judges that a landmark decision last summer from the Michigan Supreme Court didn’t actually doom the Flint water prosecution. But prosecutors continue to rack up losses.
In Snyder’s case, the appeals court swept aside the state’s appeal in a one-sentence order.
Snyder was governor in 2014 when Flint, under state management, began using the Flint River as a water source. But unlike the previous supply, the water wasn’t treated to reduce the impact on old pipes, unleashing lead throughout the city.
Snyder, who left office in 2019, was indicted on two misdemeanor counts of willful neglect of duty.
The state Supreme Court last June unanimously said a one-judge grand jury can’t issue indictments. As a result, charges have been dismissed against Snyder, former health director Nick Lyon and six others.
The attorney general’s office, however, isn’t giving up. It’s now asking the Supreme Court to take yet another look at Lyon’s case. He is blamed for some Legionnaires’ disease deaths in the Flint area during the water switch.
The case has been a ‘mess caused by the overly zealous prosecution,’ Lyon’s attorneys said in a recent filing.