Water crisis hearing with "DEQ 4" moves to 16th day
FLINT, Mich. - It was back to court Monday for four MDEQ officials who face charges in the Flint water crisis.
In day 16 of a preliminary hearing, Stephen Busch, Michael Prysby, Patrick Cook and Liane Shekter-Smith face various charges including misconduct in office.
On the stand Pastor Allen Overton from Christ Fellowship M.B. Church, was called to testify for his roll as chairman of the Coalition for Clean Water.
Special Prosecutor Todd Flood pointed at the pastor saying, "he goes to Lansing to start the cry for help."
MDEQ water regulators Stephen Busch and Liane Shekter-Smith met with Overton and a group from Flint in August of 2015.
Busch made statements at that meeting that Overton didn't agree with.
Overton says "he says the water isn't bad, its testing well and in compliance, but we knew it was bad and that couldn't be right".
Later, Overton described an emotional meeting between Shekter-Smith and the Flint mother who was among the first to speak out about the problem: Lee Ann Walters.
Overton says "in tears, Lee Ann Walters tried to give her a report, she said take this. But Smith said 'I'm not taking it'".
Shekter-Smith and Busch, along DEQ water regulators Michael Prysby and Patrick Cook, all face charges.
Shekter-Smith and Busch are each charged with involuntary manslaughter.
Overton's group, the Coalition for Clean Water filed a federal lawsuit over the water issue.
Prosecutor Flood used that as a way to pivot to one of his main concerns: Legionella.
Flood says "the DEQ lied about it in that lawsuit and didn't disclose the report of Legionella".
Overton admitted he never heard anything about Legionella, until the governor's news conference on January of 2016.
Flood says on Friday he'll call 3 new witnesses: Dr. Laura Sullivan from Kettering University, Daughtery Johnson from Flint's water department and Harvey Hollins from the governor's staff.