Patrick Brightwell, hired by NPS, accused of dumping waste in Potomac River
(WJLA) - A Georgia man is accused of dumping waste into the Potomac River from Hains Point when his company was contracted with the National Park Service to clean the National Mall's storm water sewer system.
Patrick Brightwell, of Bogart, Ga., was arrested and indicted on eight counts including conspiracy, a Clean Water Act violation, false claims, and obstructing the investigation of these offenses by tampering with witnesses and making false statements.
The illegal dumping of wastewater puts public health in danger and threatens the environment.
"This indictment alleges that Patrick Brightwell ripped off the taxpayer and polluted the Potomac River by illegally dumping waste he was being paid to dispose of properly," said U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr.
According to the indictment, Brightwell's company had a contract between 2008 and 2011 to clean the storm water sewer system on the National Mall and properly dispose of the waste. But Brightwell allegedly told his employees to take the waste from a vacuum truck and dump it into a Hains Point storm drain that flows into the Potomac River.
During this period, Brightwell continued to invoice the National Park Service for cleaning services. His company received about $533,000 between 2008 and 2011, according to the indictment.
Brightwell also allegedly told his employees and subcontractors to lie to police about the illegal dumping.
Earlier this year, B&P Environmental LLC and a B&P employee both pleaded guilty to violations of the Clean Water Act.