FLINT, Mich. — The Latest on the criminal case against a Michigan health official who is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the Flint water crisis (all times local):
A doctor hired by the state to investigate an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in the Flint area says Michigan’s health director was dismissive at times.
Dr. Marcus Zervos testified Thursday that Nick Lyon once told him, “People are going to die of something.”
Lyon is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of an 85-year-old man who had Legionnaires’. He’s also charged with misconduct in office. A judge must decide if there’s enough evidence to send the case to trial.
Lyon is accused of failing to alert the public in a timely manner about a Legionnaires’ outbreak in the Flint area in 2014-15. Some experts have blamed the outbreak on Flint’s use of the Flint River as a public water source.
The state didn’t publicly acknowledge the outbreak until 2016.
A former Michigan health official says he started asking questions about bacteria in Flint’s water supply a year before the state publicly acknowledged an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease.
Tim Becker is the first witness Thursday at a hearing that will determine whether Nick Lyon goes to trial on two charges, including involuntary manslaughter.
Lyon is head of the Department of Health and Human Services. He’s accused of failing to alert the public in a timely manner about a Legionnaires’ outbreak in the Flint area in 2014-15.
Some experts have blamed the outbreak on Flint’s failure to treat its water to reduce corrosion.
Becker was the department’s deputy director. He says he started inquiring about legionella bacteria in January 2015. The outbreak was publicly announced a year later.