SPENCER TOWNSHIP, Ohio-- Criminal charges have been filed for spilled chemicals and thousands of gallons of water stolen from Spencer Lake in Medina County.
The I-Team recently revealed a fisherman called 911 when he saw a big truck with chemicals spilling into the lake. He said it appeared the man with the truck was drawing water from the lake too.
Medina County Sheriff’s Deputies stopped the truck. The driver could be heard talking about the spilled chemicals saying, "The tank was empty, it’s just what was left in the line."
"We've done it many times before, and as far as I know, we've never had an issue," he said.
Now, Medina city prosecutors have filed a pile of charges against Evan Osburn.
"Spencer Lake is our community, and it affects our entire community as a whole." said assistant prosecutor Megan Philbin. "We hope that this signals to other companies and other individuals that we take this kind of thing very seriously."
Osburn works for a company called RWC. The company sprays chemicals on weeds along railroad tracks.
Investigators found, on the day of the incident, 25 gallons of herbicide spilled into Spencer Lake. The day before, Osburn had gone there with his truck and taken 4650 gallons of water without permission, investigators also discovered.
The I-Team looked at the possible punishment for a conviction. Adding up the max for all the charges comes out to a total of a little less than a year in jail and a couple thousand dollars in fines.
Osburn didn’t return a message from the I-Team.
While he faces charges, the company does not. A man who answered the phone at the office would not identify himself, but he said the company is cooperating with authorities.
Osburn goes to court for the chance to fight the charges in a few weeks.