Service station owner denies dumping gas

(WXYZ) - The owner of an Ypsilanti Township auto repair and oil change shop wants to defend himself against recent accusations alleging his workers dumped gas down a storm sewer on purpose.

"There are two sides to every story," said Mike Murillo.

According to the Wayne County Sheriff's Department, a customer from a nearby business noticed the stench of gas and did some investigating.

The customer called police.

Murillo told 7 Action News workers were trying to repair a fuel tank on a car when gas started leaking from a bin which was used to store the fluid.

According to Murillo, the substance drained into this storm sewer.

Murillo believes it was three or four gallons of gas.

"It was a small innocent spill and nobody is responsible for dumping any kind of fluids," said Murillo.

Mike Radzik, director of the Office of Community Standards told 7 Action News, "Any time these kind of hazardous materials get into the storm water system and ultimately into the county drain system, it pollutes, contaminates water waste in Michigan which is clearly against the law."

Inspectors took samples from the storm drain and are investigating the situation now.

According to Radzik, the building has several violations and needs repair. The area is zoned in B3 commercial, which means the car shop is only supposed to do minor fixes.

It is alleged Murillo, who rents the building, was selling cars at the shop and it is not zoned for those type of sales.

"From my misunderstanding, from my landlord… I rented this building three and a half years ago.  I was never told… from my ignorance I guess, that we could not sell cars here," said Murillo.  "As you can see the cars are all gone."

It is not clear if an criminal charges will be filed. The township is filing a civil lawsuit against the business.

Both Radzik and Murillo hope to continue a working business relationship in the area. 

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