A U.S. District Court Judge issued his verdict this morning in a landmark civil suit involving an environmental group, poultry giant Perdue Farms Incorporated, and an Eastern Shore farm family.
Judge William Nickerson ruled in favor of the defendants: Perdue Farms Incorporated and Alan and Kristin Hudson, the Eastern Shore farmers who were accused of poisoning local waterways that feed into the Chesapeake Bay with poultry runoff. In his decision, he said they did not prove their case.
After almost three years of tense legal posturing, the case between the Hudsons and the Waterkeeper Alliance reached U.S. District Court in October and wrapped after 10 days of testimony.
The Hudson's grow chickens for Perdue Farms, and the Waterkeeper Alliance believed that Perdue should also be held accountable for the Hudsons' alleged improper disposal of their poultry waste.
Perdue officials say they are thrilled with the judge's decision, but in a statement from the Waterkeeper Alliance, they say that they are going to review and consider an appeal.
Virginia's attorney general Ken Cuccinelli will face former Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe in November to become Virginia's 72nd governor.