ST. CHARLES, Mo. (AP) — Missouri’s third-largest county has filed a lawsuit against pharmaceutical manufacturers and drug distributors, accusing them of causing the drug epidemic through aggressive and fraudulent marketing of prescription opioids.
Officials in St. Charles County filed the suit Monday, seeking compensatory and punitive damages. The lawsuit says the County spends millions of dollars each year to combat the public nuisance created by opioid abuse.
The lawsuit is the latest of more than 400 filed by cities and counties across the country against makers and distributors of opioid painkillers. Several states also have filed similar lawsuits.
St. Charles County Executive Steve Ehlmann says that in addition to the human toll, the drug crisis puts greater demand on law enforcement, health services, corrections and the courts.