David Chizewer is quoted in "Superfund Homeowners Fight to Keep Legacy Polluter Lawsuit Alive In E.C.," published in the Aug. 31, 2020, edition of Northwest Indiana Times.
The article concerns the lawsuit filed against polluters DuPont/Chemours and Atlantic Richfield claiming they severely contaminated yards and homes in the East Chicago neighborhoods, West Calumet, Calumet and East Calumet. The suit claims the pollutants are responsible for declining property values, emotional distress and owners' difficulty in selling their homes in the toxic neighborhood.
While the companies have argued the homeowners are beyond the statute of limitations for suing them, the residents claim they didn't learn the full extent of the problem for years. Residents and Mr. Chizewer urged the judge not to dismiss the three-year-old case, arguing they are entitled to compensation for the damage caused by lead smelting, refining and manufacturing.
“In the course of poisoning the properties of the East Chicago residents, defendants pocketed billions of dollars in profit. Yet, defendants ask this court to excuse them from any liability to the homeowners whose properties defendants so badly contaminated,” said Mr. Chizewer, who is handling the case pro bono.
The lawsuit was first filed Oct. 31, 2017 in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana.
Chizewer filed opposition to the companies’ motion to dismiss on Aug. 21, 2020. In the opposition filing, 46 residents and Mr. Chizewer urged Judge Joseph S. Van Bokkelen to not dismiss the three-year-old case, arguing they are entitled to recoup for the damage done and the emotional distress caused by “decades of environmental havoc” caused by lead smelting, refining and manufacturing.