CASE UPDATE: Berks County Construction Company Owner Pleads Guilty to Falsifying Drinking Water Reports

August 20, 2019 | Topic: Criminal

HARRISBURGAttorney General Josh Shapiro today announced that the owner of a Berks County construction company pleaded guilty to falsifying lab reports for water samples following the installation of new water mains in Berks and Lancaster Counties. Matthew Barrasso, 43, of Mohnton, pleaded guilty to Tampering with Public Records, violating the Safe Drinking Water Act, Forgery, and Unsworn Falsification. He was sentenced to 3 years of probation and ordered to pay a $12,500 fine.

The defendant was arrested and charged in June 2019 after an investigation found that he changed lab results to indicate that samples from a water main in Wyomissing Borough were negative for total coliform and E. coli. He also engaged in similar conduct in Quarryville, Lancaster County.

“Pennsylvanians have a constitutional right to clean air and pure water and, as Attorney General, I am committed to defending that right against anyone who tries to impede on it,” said Attorney General Josh Shapiro. “The defendant put the health and wellbeing of the people of Berks and Lancaster Counties at risk by falsely reporting the absence of harmful bacteria in their drinking water. Thanks to the hard work of our Environmental Crimes Section, we put an end to his dangerous behavior.”

Chief Deputy Attorney General Rebecca Franz prosecuted the case.

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