Houston man settles listeria suit against Blue Bell
A former Houston resident has settled a federal lawsuit against Blue Bell Creameries, a year after listeria was found in the popular ice cream.
David “Phil” Shockley was not among the official 10 Blue Bell-linked listeria cases reported by the CDC in 2015, but according to a suit he filed against the Brenham, Texas-based company, the ice cream products he consumed before he was diagnosed with the deadly bacteria were the only ones that could have been tainted.
At just 31-years-old Shockley was forced to move home to his parents house in Maryland because he was unable to walk, talk, swallow or move much of his body. He needs full-time care, a condition that is permanent, court records show.
Shockley’s case was scheduled to wrap-up the discovery phase on September 2nd. Last week one of the lawyers who has been representing Shockley announced that the case has been settled.
According to court records, it was never confirmed that Shockley had gotten listeria from Blue Bell products because his listeria-positive bacteria samples were not sent off to state or national labs for testing, despite a Texas law that requires this to be done.
Neither side is commenting on the details of the agreement.
It was discovered back in February of 2015 by a random test done by health officials in South Carolina that Blue Bell had been churning out listeria-ridden products for years, according to Food and Drug Administration records. The company was forced to shut down for months while struggling to fix the problem. They’ve since reopened and are continuing to produce ice cream products and distribute them across the nation.
10 people were confirmed to have contracted the disease from Blue Bell products – three of whom died – according the Centers for Disease Control. The names of those victims have not yet been released by the CDC, as it is not common practice for them to release private information about people they test.
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- Written by Jill Fowler