Judge: Perjury charge against Snyder aide OK for now in Flint water case

The Detroit News

Flint — A judge on Monday declined to dismiss an indictment against a former state official who is charged with perjury in an investigation of the Flint water crisis.

The indictment against Jarrod Agen remains valid despite a lack of details and can be updated, Genesee County Judge Elizabeth Kelly said.

Jarrod Agen

She said she won't decide whether the indictment was filed in the wrong county or whether the one-man grand jury had proper jurisdiction until another judge determines what grand jury material can be released.

“I'm not limiting Mr. Agen. I just don't think today was the time to do so,” Kelly said.

Agen was Gov. Rick Snyder's chief of staff. He's accused of making a false statement while speaking to Flint water investigators in Ingham County in 2017.

“He never lied,” defense attorney Seth Waxman told the judge. "He walked up to Lansing, provided his testimony and was honest. We have no idea what the government is trying to do here.”

Agen, Snyder and seven more people were charged in the investigation. Snyder-appointed emergency managers switched Flint’s water supply to the Flint River in 2014, but the water wasn’t properly treated to reduce corrosion. Lead contaminated the system.

Snyder, a Republican who was governor through 2018, is charged with two misdemeanor counts of willful neglect of duty.