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Jury can’t reach verdict in engineers’ Flint water trial

DETROIT (AP) — A judge declared a mistrial Thursday after jurors said they couldn’t reach a verdict in a dispute over whether two engineering firms should bear some responsibility for Flint’s lead-contaminated water. Four families accused Veolia North America and Lockwood, Andrews & Newman, known as LAN, of not doing enough to get Flint to treat the highly corrosive water or to urge a return to a regional water supplier. A mistrial was declared…

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DOWNTOWN (AP) — After the jury claimed it was unable to decide whether two engineering firms should share some blame for Flint’s lead-contaminated water, the judge declared a mistrial on Thursday.

Four households claimed that Veolia North America and Lockwood, Andrews & Newman (LAN), a regional water supplier, had not done enough to persuade Flint to treat the extremely corrosive water.

According to Tarrah Cooper Wright, a Veolia spokesman, the federal court in Ann Arbor, Michigan, ruled a mistrial.

The jury started deliberations on July 25 after hearing months’ worth of testimony, but they also took a prearranged 11-day break before coming back on Tuesday.

Because Flint River water was not treated to lessen its corrosive impact on lead pipes, Flint’s water became poisoned in 2014–15.

Poor decisions by state and local leaders, according to Veolia and LAN, who worked for Flint at the water facility, are what led to the disaster.

A historic $626 million settlement involving Flint residents, the state of Michigan, and other parties did not include Veolia and LAN.