Subpoenas served to Snyder, MDEQ in class-action lawsuits filed - WNEM TV 5

Subpoenas served to Snyder, MDEQ in class-action lawsuits filed in water crisis

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Troy Kodd Courtesy: WNEM Troy Kodd Courtesy: WNEM

Subpoenas for records were served to Gov. Rick Snyder, the governor's office and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality on Jan. 25.

The records include emails, text messages or other documents sent or received by Snyder, his staff, or the emergency managers Darnell Early, Michael Brown, Gerald Ambrose or Edward Kurtz relating to the Flint River as a water source from Jan. 1, 2011 to the present.

The subpoena will be delivered to the attorneys in the class-action lawsuit by Feb. 9.

One of the lawsuits was filed in a federal court in November. The two new lawsuits were filed on the state and county level earlier in January.

Troy Kidd's mom Debra passed away at the age of 58. She died from Legionnaires' disease and now he's wondering if Flint's tainted water is to blame.

"Blew my mind. Like I said this was five months ago, kind of getting back to our normal routine and then all of a sudden it just opens a wound right back up," Kidd said.

Attorneys representing Flint residents gave an update on three class-action lawsuits at University of Michigan Flint.

While separate, the demands of the suits are the same: financial aid to all those affected, halting bill collections, and reimbursing money for all water bills paid since the switch to Flint River water in April 2014.

Keith Pemberton is one of the plaintiffs named in the federal suit.

"We still get rashes. We still get lesions," Pemberton said.

Pemberton said he just wants clean, safe water. He said he wants Gov. Rick Snyder, one of the suit’s defendants, to be held accountable.

"We have records that he knew about it from the very first switch," Snyder said.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs want to know what Snyder knew and when he knew it.

"This governor is going to have to sit. Now he may not be the governor when he sits for the deposition, maybe after his term, but we're going to try to get the governor to answer questions under oath," said attorney Michael Pitt.

Pitt, an attorney in all three suits, said he's using the discovery phase of the suit filed against the state to target Snyder's emails.

Pitt said the governor has six weeks to make them public. Pitt said he believes those emails will shed light into what role the governor had in the water crisis.

"If we would have done what he did. They would've come after us with the police, the National Guard, the Army, whatever it took, they would've labeled us domestic terrorists," Pemberton said.

No matter what unfolds, Kidd said his life will never be the same.

"Very frustrating to know that it could've been avoided," Kidd said.

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