City of Summersville Files Suit against Manufacturers and Distributors of Opioids

SUMMERSVILLE, WV -In the heart of West Virginia, which has become “ground zero” in the nation’s opioid crisis, the City of Summersville has filed a lawsuit against the manufacturers and distributors of opioids responsible for flooding the market with pills spawning a nationwide crisis.

The suit was filed to hold these out-of-state entities accountable for providing false and misleading information to doctors and patients about the safety and efficacy of prescription opioids over approximately the last 20 years and for ignoring federal rules requiring reporting of opioid distribution numbers.

No state in the nation has been hit harder by this crisis than West Virginia. The City of Summersville joins other municipalities, counties and states across the country holding opioid distributors and manufacturers liable for the harms they have inflicted on its community and the financial burden this epidemic has caused.

Robert Shafer, Mayor of Summersville, stated that “We have for far too long, been spending our resources on combating what will go down as being this state’s biggest social crisis. It’s time to hold accountable an industry that has put profit above the lives of West Virginians.” 

The lawsuit seeks damages to remedy the impact of the opioid crisis on the City of Summersville. The city has suffered significant damages. For example, the city’s police, fire, and emergency service workers responding to opioid related health crisis’s including overdose and pickup and disposal of used needles routinely.

Opioid-related crimes have soared. Prior to the influx of opioid pills to the area, opioids were rarely seized by the police department. Today, the Police Department routinely finds large amounts of pills and heroin in drug busts, and has had to devote many resources to the police force to combat this influx of drug activity.

The suit is styled The City of Summersville, West Virginia v. Amerisourcebergen Drug Corporation, et al, Civil Action No. 2:18-cv-00431, and has been filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia at Charleston, WV. The City of Summersville is represented in the suit by Rusty Webb, The Webb Law Centre, PLLC, of Charleston, WV; and John Hurst, of Motley Rice LLC, of Charleston, SC.

Rusty Webb is a personal injury and class action lawyer with 30 years of experience helping clients throughout West Virginia.

For additional information you may contact Mayor, Robert Shafer at 304-872-1211 or Rusty Webb at The Webb Law Firm, PLLC, 716 Lee Street, East, Charleston, West Virginia 25301; by e-mail at; by telephone 304-344-WEBB (9322).

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