August 25, 2005
SEPTIC HAULER JAILED FOR ONE YEAR FOR WATER POLLUTION
Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that Paul
Wayne Adkins, 61, formerly of Hall Highway, in Crisfield, Maryland
has been convicted of water pollution in Somerset County. Visiting
Judge Alfred Truitt heard the case in the Circuit Court for Somerset
County and sentenced Adkins to serve one year in jail.
The conviction results from Adkins illegally discharging commercial
grease directly into Manokin Run, off of Recycle Drive, in Somerset
County. Commercial grease is material that is pumped out of grease
traps at restaurants and other commercial kitchen facilities.
Adkins, was the owner/operator of a septic hauling business
Septic Care, Incorporated. American Septic Care pumped out residential
and commercial septic tanks (and commercial grease traps) and
hauled the pumped septage and grease to licensed disposal
The health of our waterways is of the utmost importance to all
citizens of Maryland. We must hold accountable anyone who flagrantly
disregards their responsibility and dumps into our waterways pollutant
they have been hired to dispose of properly,” said Attorney
On March 31, 2005, Adkins traveled with his 3,500-gallon tank
truck to an isolated area of Recycle Drive. He backed the truck
road and with the aid of a helper, Adkins opened the valves on
the rear of the truck and discharged a large quantity of grease,
collected from a grease trap at a commercial establishment, into
Manokin Run. Manokin Run flows into the Manokin River before
entering the Chesapeake Bay. After Adkins left, neighbors saw
sewage-like material in the creek and along the bank where Adkins’ truck
had been parked. The banks of the creek and much of the nearby
vegetation were covered with a brown greasy residue that appeared
to have been forced from a tanker under pressure. The grease
contamination extended three to four feet up the trunks of trees
on the opposite
side of the creek. Additionally, there were fragments of toilet
paper and other personal hygiene items stuck in the vegetation
along the creek. The only lawful way to dispose of commercial
grease or septage is to transport them to licensed facilities
to properly dispose of the material.
Adkins was convicted of dumping septage in Wicomico County in
2004. He served ninety days in the Wicomico County Detention
that conviction and was on probation at the time of this offense.
Adkins is no longer in the septic hauling business and has sold
American Septic Care. The maximum sentence for the illegal discharge
of a pollutant into waters of the State for a repeat offender
is up to two years in prison and/or a fine of $50,000.
This conviction follows a joint investigation conducted by the
Environmental Crimes Unit of the Office of the Attorney General
and the Maryland State Police.