Michigan's health department director and four other officials involved in the crisis were charged Wednesday, June 14, with involuntary manslaughter, the most severe charges so far in the criminal investigation, according to The Detroit News.
Schuette acknowledged the "significant gravity and weight" of the manslaughter count, which carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison, and said some critics believed he was being unduly harsh. The investigation has shown that Lyon allegedly received notice of a deadly Legionnaires' Disease outbreak in Genesee County almost one year before he informed the public.
"We charged those individuals with serious crimes", Schuette said. "And we're not filing charges at this time", he said.
Head of Health Organization, Nick Lyon was also accused of failing to warn the public about the outbreak of Legionnaire's disease in Flint area.
The others charged with involuntary manslaughter were already facing other charges.
Mid-March. 2016: State officials testify before Congress, including Snyder and the state-appointed emergency manager who oversaw Flint when the water source was switched to the river.
Nothing was said on Busch, Croft, Earley or Shekter-Smith.
Prosecutors also brought charges against the state's chief medical officer, Dr. Eden Wells, 54, who is accused of obstruction of justice and lying to an investigator.
Attorneys for the defendants said the charges were baseless.
Liane Shekter-Smith, former supervisor at the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, who was previously charged with misconduct and willful neglect related to inaction on Legionnaires' and lead issues in Flint. We have represented Mr. Lyon approaching 18 months.
January 5, 2016: Snyder declares a state of emergency in Flint, the same day federal officials confirm that they are investigating. "We were not successful", he said.
"It's good to see that state Attorney General Schuette and his team are taking this matter seriously", Flint Mayor Karen Weaver said in a statement.
Snyder expressed support for Lyon and Wells.
A report issued by the attorney general's investigative team noted that some of Snyder's top aides had raised concerns about the Flint water situation as much as a year before October 1, 2015, when the governor says he learned of the lead contamination.
PLUTA: And Snyder added they will remain on the job. Croft's alleged failure to treat the water properly contributed to the bacterial outbreaks found in Flint, including the legionella in the spring of 2015. Toxic lead from old plumbing leached into the water system, causing elevated levels in children and leaving residents to drink and bathe with bottled or filtered water.
Legionnaires' disease is a form of atypical pneumonia that is caused by bacteria.
Skidmore, 85, was one of 12 people to die from the disease and almost 100 cases of people being sickened from it.
His mom contracted Legionnaires' at Flint's McLaren hospital while being treated for a migraine. He died at home six months later.
Charging documents also allege that professors at Wayne State University were asked by Snyder's office to do research into the Legionnaires' outbreak and a possible link to the water in Flint. The investigation, he said, "wasn't one that was easily solved".