Crime & Courts

Man lied about quality of Garden Plain’s drinking water to EPA, indictment alleges

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Garden Plain’s former water system operator is in trouble for allegedly lying to the Environmental Protection Agency about where got tap water samples used to test the quality of the city’s drinking water.

An indictment filed Thursday in federal court says Arthur Wolfe, 62, certified bacteriological reports that said he’d collected tap water from four homes in Garden Plain last winter, when he really got it all from 411 Loomis — the City of Garden Plain’s shop.

Samples are typically taken from more than one location to make sure bacteria is not seeping into the water lines.

Garden Plain, which has around 900 residents, is required to collect at least two water samples a month for testing.

According to the latest EPA consumer confidence report, there were no contaminants found in Garden Plain in 2017 and the drinking water is safe. The city’s water comes from three ground water wells, the report says.

Wolfe lied about the addresses where the water samples were taken on Dec. 22, 2017, and on Feb. 6, 2018, the indictment alleges.

Wolfe, who lives in Norwich, is charged with two counts of making false statements to the EPA when he knew the information was false or fraudulent.

He faces up to five years in federal prison and up to $250,000 in fines for each count if he’s convicted, McAllister said in the news release.

Amy Renee Leiker: 316-268-6644, @amyreneeleiker