WASHINGTON – The former manager of the Inwood Dairy, David Inskeep, was sentenced today to 30 days in prison, one year supervised release and a $3,000 fine for a criminal misdemeanor violation of the federal Clean Water Act (CWA), the Justice Department announced today. Inskeep, who formerly served as manager and operator of the Inwood Dairy located in Elmwood, Ill., pleaded guilty to one count of negligently discharging pollutants into waters of the United States without a permit on March 24, 2006.
Inskeep managed the Inwood Dairy and its 1,250 dairy cows and operated a waste management system consisting of a lagoon designed to hold approximately 40 million gallons of waste generated by the animals at full capacity. The system used water to flush cattle manure and waste water from the Dairy’s barns to a central collection point; waste was then pumped to the lagoon for storage until it could be lawfully removed.
According to the plea agreement, on February 14, 2001, an Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) official observed that the waste level in the Inwood Dairy lagoon was three inches from the top of the berm wall and advised Inskeep to stop pumping waste in to the lagoon. The following day, another IEPA official allegedly found the lagoon was completely full with the pump still operating. Despite the official’s request to turn off the pump to prevent an overflow and discharge into a local tributary—and subsequent flow to the West Fork of Kickapoo Creek—Inskeep refused to turn off the pump. Inskeep failed to hire waste haulers to remove the waste, and he ultimately decided to pump more than a million gallons of animal waste from the lagoon to a tributary located on his property despite being told by state regulators that such action was illegal.
Inskeep pleaded guilty to one count of negligently discharging pollutants (animal waste) into waters of the United States without a permit in violation of the federal Clean Water Act.
The case was investigated by Special Agents of the Environmental Protection Agency and IEPA and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Trial attorney Mary Dee Carraway of the Environmental Crimes Section of the U.S. Department of Justice and Assistant U.S. Attorney Tate Chambers are prosecuting the case.