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Another misdemeanor deal in Flint water investigation

FLINT, Mich. (AP) — Michigan’s former drinking water regulator has pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor in the Flint water investigation.

It’s a break for Liane Shekter Smith, who was facing felony charges, including involuntary manslaughter , in an investigation of Flint’s lead-tainted water and a Legionnaires’ disease outbreak.

Smith pleaded no contest Monday to disturbance of a lawful meeting and agreed to testify against others, if necessary. Special prosecutor Todd Flood praised her “candor and truthfulness.” Defense attorney Brian Morley says the case likely will be dismissed in six to 12 months.

Seven people now have resolved their cases with misdemeanor pleas.

Flint’s water was contaminated with lead when the city switched sources in 2014 and didn’t treat water to reduce corrosion. A former state health director and a state doctor are awaiting trial on involuntary manslaughter charges related to a Legionnaires’ outbreak that was blamed on the water.

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