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Tag: maureen stevens

Feds to Pay Widow of Anthrax Victim $2.5 Million

One of the real anthrax letters in 2001/fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The feds are getting out the check book to cover an anthrax lawsuit filed by the wife whose husband — a Florida tabloid photo editor — was killed in 2001 by an anthrax letter.

The Associated Press reports that the U.S. government has agreed to pay widow Maureen Stevens $2.5 million to settle a lawsuit she filed.

The suit claimed the government failed to set in place security measures to assure that no one at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick, Md. got a hold of a the deadly anthrax strain  that was used to kill her husband and four others.

As part of the agreement, the wife has agreed to drop all other claims relating to the death of her husband Robert Stevens.

For years, some at the FBI were convinced that Ft. Detrick scientist Steven Hatfill was the culprit. But eventually investigators turned their attention toward Bruce Ivins, a scientist in the lab who committed suicide in July 2008, shortly before the feds planned to charge him in the deadly mailings that killed 5 and sickened 17 others.

 

Widow of Anthrax Victim Settles Lawsuit Against Feds

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Maureen Stevens’ legal battle with the feds over the anthrax death of her husband seems to be over.

Reuters reports that the widow of the deceased Florida tabloid photo editor Robert Stevens — one of five people killed in the 2001 anthrax attacks in the U.S. — has reached a settlement with the government in her wrongful death suit. She had asked for $50 million in damages, but the terms of the settlement were not disclosed.

“The parties have reached a tentative settlement subject to required approval by officials in the Department of Justice,” said a Oct. 27 document filed with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida in West Palm Beach, according to Reuters.

Maureen Stevens had filed the suit in 2003, saying the government was negligent by failing to secure the anthrax used in the attacks.

The government eventually concluded that government scientist Bruce Ivins had sent the deadly anthrax. Ivins committed suicide in July 2008, just before the feds planned to charge him in the case.

Some scientists and Congressional members have questioned whether Ivins was really the culprit, but the Justice Department and the FBI have insisted the evidence as whole is overwhelming.