Allen County will be joining two Indiana counties and one city in a lawsuit against pharmaceutical companies and distributors.
Allen County’s Board of Commissioners unanimously agreed to take part in the effort Friday morning. They will join Lake and Monroe Counties, as well as the City of Bloomington, who entered the suit earlier this week.
The lawsuit aims to reimburse municipalities for financial losses from autopsies, emergency response, supplies of naloxone and other expenses to combat the state’s drug epidemic.
First district commissioner Nelson Peters says the board was initially going to avoid the lawsuit, but changed its mind after meeting with lawyers.
“There was a lot of alleged misrepresentation in terms of what distributors and manufacturers were telling the doctors with respect to the addictive parts of opioids,” he said.
Peters says the onus should be on the drug companies, not taxpayers, to cover the expenses.
The county will partner with Milwaukee-based firm Crueger Dickinson for its legal representation, which is seeking 25 percent of returns if the suit is successful. It’s not clear when it will formally be filed.