Account of the woburn trial

Skinner angrily refused -- a decision that came back to haunt him when the appeals court rendered its ruling nearly a year later. He added that TCE concentrations were greater near wells G and H than they were farther to the north, where the industries Guswa and others had identified were located.

Knox, a Bedford, New Hampshire, well driller, said he observed four men use a backhoe and a dump truck to remove debris and soil from the 15 acres in the summer of Testimony presented during depositions of retired and current employees indicated about one quart of trichloroethylene, which was used to clean equipment and in the paint shop, was dumped on to the ground surface behind the plant each evening.

Guswa disagreed, but Schlichtmann appeared to have gotten the better of that exchange. The jurors had no way of objectively deciding whether Pinder or Guswa was right.

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If you have answered "Yes" in question 1 as to any chemical swhat, according to the preponderance of the evidence, was the earliest time after August 27, that such chemical s disposed of on the Beatrice site made a substantial contribution to the contamination of Wells G and H?

The judge wrote that the families "are entitled to information bearing on the existence of a general plan of concealment of which the nondisclosure of the Yankee report may have been one manifestation.

The trial ends The jurors trudged off to begin their deliberations on Tuesday, July 15, with orders to deliberate from 9 a. Sign Up Thank you for signing up! Under questioning by attorney Sandra Lynch, Keating's principal assistant, Cady identified two additional sources of pollution to the river -- Anderson Foreign Motors, of Woburn, and the Industri-Plex hazardous-waste site, in North Woburn.

Closing arguments Judge Skinner's courtroom was steamy and packed the morning of July 14, when the lawyers were scheduled to make their closing arguments. Maslansky was retained by Grace to study the extent of contamination at the Cryovac site.

Stepping forward was Arthur Licata, a member of the committee, who edited Schlichtmann's draft and wrote the closing section -- and he, too, had been involved in the case, researching some legal issues and loaning Schlichtmann money.

The jurors looked at what remained of wells G and H, the acre Beatrice property, the Riley tannery property, the Cryovac manufacturing plant, and several sites north of the wells, including the Olin Chemical plant, in Wilmington. Guswa, Grace's hydrogeologist, had testified that even if TCE had been dumped on the Grace property inthe chemical would still have not reached the wells.

Woburn Toxic Trial Chronology

Juror Robert Fox, of Marblehead, a painting contractor, told the Times Chronicle the jurors believed September was the date by which there was sufficient contamination on the Grace site to pose a threat to the two wells.

He said he learned of the Yankee report for the first time in Januaryjust before the trial began, when Ryan showed it to him at a deposition. But the judge said he changed his mind after touring the property with the jury July 1: Because they were potential witnesses, they would not even be allowed to attend court sessions, meaning the jurors would not see the people who brought the suit before rendering a verdict.

Ina federal jury in Boston convicted him of 11 counts of mail fraud, the Globe reported at the time. Jacobs deliberately concealed the reports or any other evidence. Charles Nesson, Schlichtmann's associate, asked Skinner to question lawyers for Beatrice and Riley to determine whether the documents had been deliberately withheld.

Investigators spoke with Camuti the following day after learning he was the last person Rakes spoke to before disappearing, Lynch said.

451: Unavailable for legal reasons

February 7, W. In the absence of any similar evidence regarding Beatrice, Skinner had ruled Schlichtmann would have to show that Beatrice negligently allowed others to dump on the 15 acres in order to be found liable. Grace answers to interrogatories initial response December Formation of Schlichtmann, Conway and Crowley.

Fortunately for him, Pinder had already virtually guaranteed that the families would not win their case against Beatrice.

Trial of man accused of poisoning Stephen Rakes begins in Woburn

On July 10 Skinner ruled that Beatrice, through the actions of a former tannery owner and his lawyer, had engaged in "deliberate misconduct. Riley denied the existence of laboratory reports and chemical formulas which were clearly called for.

If any contaminant used at the defendants' properties was found to reach the wells within the period when wells G and H were in use tothe trial would proceed to the next two phases dealing with the health effects.

In late the grand jury handed down an indictment, charging Grace with two counts of providing false information to the EPA. Schlichtmann charged that W. That was when Riley received a letter from Denis Maher, a Woburn well driller, stating the level of Riley's industrial well on the 15 acres was dropping, probably because of the action of nearby municipal wells.

Northeast of the tannery was the acre parcel, undeveloped land that the tannery had purchased in the s for its water supply. The bad news was that he had decided to order a new first-phase trial for Grace rather than move on to the second phase.

A settlement is reached As it turned out, Skinner's ruling on Keating's motion would be anticlimactic. Keating also questioned Pinder, and argued that the wells may have become contaminated by drawing water from the river, which has a year history of industrial pollution.

The incident was loaded with ironies. Mernin, a resident of East Woburn, died of leukemia in December CBS, Inc. Myette, project manager for the USGS test of wells G and H, testified that two engineering firms hired by Beatrice reneged on an agreement to monitor the industrial well at the southern end of the 15 acres during the December pump test, thus making it impossible to tell whether groundwater beneath some parts of the 15 acres would flow toward wells G and H or toward the industrial well.The publication of Jonathan Harr's excellent book A Civil Action has renewed interest in the Woburn toxic-waste trial, a landmark in environmental law.

From to I was a staff reporter for the Woburn Daily Times Chronicle, for whom I covered the I won the New England Press Association's top news-reporting award for my coverage of the verdict and its immediate aftermath.

Death and justice

The Massachusetts court system consists of the Supreme Judicial Court, the Appeals Court, the Executive Office of the Trial Court, the 7 Trial Court departments, the Massachusetts Probation Service, and the Office of Jury Commissioner. BURLINGTON - The trial of accused murderer Christopher Piantedosi began yesterday in Woburn’s Middlesex Superior Court.

Last May, Piantedosi turned himself in after a warrant was issued for his. A Civil Action - The Woburn Toxic Trial > Case Summary Overview This landmark case centered on the alleged contamination of two municipal supply wells (G and H) in Woburn, Massachusetts, by three local industries.

Woburn Toxic Trial Chronology For most complicated cases, like the Woburn Toxic Trial, it is not uncommon for the trial process to span several years. Although the Woburn trial took place from March through Julythe trial process extended fromwhen families of leukemia victims first began to organize, intowhen the last.

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Account of the woburn trial
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