Johnson & Johnson put its Corporate Image over the Life of their Customers: Talcum Powder Cancer Lawsuit

samantha severyn

In the 6th trial in St. Louise Circuit Court against Johnson and Johnson’s Baby Powder, three deceased women were represented by legal counsel and their families, demanding justice!

The first talc trial in St. Louise centered on the ovarian cancer death of Jacqueline Fox. In February 2016, jurors awarded Fox's estate $72 million. In the second trial, plaintiff Gloria Ristesund was awarded $55 million in May 2016. Plaintiff Deborah Giannecchini was awarded $70 million in October. In March, J&J broke its losing streak, convincing a St. Louis jury that plaintiff Nora Daniels’ ovarian cancer was not connected to her daily use of talcum powder over several decades. Last month, however, a St. Louis jury returned after little more than a full day of deliberations and awarded the largest verdict yet, awarding plaintiff Lois Slemp $110 million in compensatory and punitive damages from J&J.

This 6th case is a bit different, claiming J&J boosted their talcum powder sales by targeting African-American women, who are known to face a higher cancer risk from talc use.

Allen R. Smith Jr., representing the families of the deceased former J&J talcum powder product users, stated that J&J put its corporate image “over the life of their customers” and how recorded documents can prove that they specifically targeted groups of women that used talc on their genital areas at a higher rate. These groups included African-American women, women that are known to have an increased risk of getting ovarian cancer when using talc on their genitals.

“The sales are slipping, they want to increase their sales, their profit,” he said. “They say, ‘What is the way that we do it? We target minority groups in an effort to boost our sales when we know there’s scientific studies that show those groups of women have an increased risk of the most deadly form of female cancer out there.’”

According to Smith, J&J should have put warning labels on their products. These warning labels would deter many women from buying and using the product, especially on their genitals. A major profit loss for J&J, something they just couldn’t do!

Blaes died at age 50 in 2010, while living in Missouri, after being diagnosed with cancer in 2008, according to an announcement by her attorneys. Virginia resident Hershman died at age 46 in 2016, two years after she was diagnosed with cancer, and Evans was a Texas resident and 41 years old when she died in 2016, after being diagnosed in in 2008, according to their attorneys.

In J&J defense, their attorney stated “Talc is not toxic, it’s not a carcinogen, it does not cause ovarian cancer, and because talc is not toxic, because talc is not a carcinogen, and because talc doesn’t cause ovarian cancer, it’s not a hazard. Warnings are only required if there is a hazard. There is no hazard here.”


Check back with Pirl in the near future for updates to this particular case.

If you or a loved one suffered from Ovarian Cancer due to the long term use of Talcum Powder (Baby Powder), Please contact us at Info@MyPirl.com