Second Colorado Listeria Lawsuit Filed Against Cantaloupe Producer


LITTLETON, COLORADO – The family of a man hospitalized after consuming contaminated cantaloupe filed a Listeria lawsuit against Rocky Ford cantaloupe producer Jensen Farms today in Arapahoe County District Court. This is the second Listeria lawsuit filed in Colorado by Marler Clark, the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of foodborne illness. A third has also been filed in Texas.

According to complaint, Herbert Stevens and his wife purchased Jensen Farms-grown Rocky Ford cantaloupe from a Littleton grocery store in early August. On August 24, 84-year-old Mr. Stevens fell ill with symptoms of listeriosis and became incapacitated. He was taken by ambulance to the hospital, where he tested positive for the same strain of Listeria that is involved in the cantaloupe Listeria outbreak. Mr. Stevens remained hospitalized until several days ago, when he was transferred to a long-term care facility. It is not clear if he will be able to return home.

“Prior to his infection, Mr. Stevens was able to live comfortably and safely at home with his wife for 59 years. The fact that he and Mrs. Stevens celebrated their 60th anniversary while he was relegated to an infirmary bed is both troubling and unfair,” said Stevens family attorney William Marler, whose firm won a $1.1 million dollar judgment on behalf of a Texas Listeria victim earlier this year. “Indeed, the loss of one’s independence is an incredibly steep price for eating cantaloupe.”

On September 19, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that 35 people from 10 states had become ill and four had died due to Listeria infections linked to the consumption of cantaloupe produced by Holly, Colorado-based Jensen Farms.

Listeria is a foodborne pathogen that may cause serious illness. Those individuals who are immune-deficient, such as children, the elderly, and pregnant women are at risk for serious problems such meningitis, brain infection, and even death. Infection in pregnant women may lead to miscarriage or stillbirth. Unlike other bacteria, Listeria grows well at cool temperatures, so even while refrigerated, many foods such as fruits, vegetables, deli meats and cheeses maintain higher risk for pathogen growth.

MARLER CLARK has filed two additional lawsuits in this outbreak and is the nation’s leading law firm dedicated solely to representing victims of foodborne illness. The firm’s Listeria attorneys have unmatched experience handling food poisoning cases and recently won a $1.1 million judgment on behalf of the family of a man who died after eating Listeria-contaminated celery. The firm has recovered over $600,000,000 for victims of foodborne illnesses. For more information or if you are a member of the media and would like to view a copy of the complaint, please contact Cody Moore at cmoore@marlerclark.com or 1-206-407-2200.