Dallas Jury Hears Openings In Latest J&J Cosmetic Talc Trial, Watch Gavel-to-Gavel via CVN

Posted by David Siegel on Jun 10, 2024 12:16:56 PM

CHapman openings

CVN screenshot of plaintiff attorney Aaron Chapman delivering his opening statement

Dallas, TX - The latest trial over allegations that Johnson & Johnson’s cosmetic talc products cause cancer got underway last week in Texas state court, and the proceedings are being webcast live and on-demand by Courtroom View Network.

A Dallas County jury heard opening statements on June 5 in the lawsuit filed by plaintiff Jerry Newton, who claims decades of using Johnson’s Baby Powder caused him to develop mesothelioma, a fatal form of cancer affecting the tissue around the lungs often associated with exposure to asbestos.

Johnson & Johnson argues 50 years of scientific evidence disprove any link between baby powder and mesothelioma, and the trial takes place amidst heightened scrutiny of talc cases as the company seeks to launch a proposed bankruptcy plan that could potentially resolve thousands of pending cosmetic talc lawsuits nationwide for roughly $6.48 billion.

The trial is also of increased interest due to being among the first cosmetic talc cases to go before a jury in Texas, and for coming on the heels of plaintiff verdicts in J&J talc cases in Illinois and Oregon in the amounts of $45 million and $260 million, respectively.

The Oregon trial was recorded by CVN in the same manner as the ongoing Texas trial, and it is available for unlimited on-demand viewing with a subscription to CVN’s online trial video library. CVN has covered dozens of cosmetic talc cases nationwide since they began going to trial in 2016, and they are all included with a video library subscription among hundreds of other trials (the Illinois trial took place in Cook County where video coverage of civil trials remains prohibited).


The same firm that represented plaintiffs in the Illinois and Oregon trials, Dallas-based Dean Omar Branham Shirley, also represents Jerry Newton in the current Texas case.

During opening statements attorney Aaron Chapman told jurors Newton exclusively used Johnson’s baby powder for decades, and that Johnson & Johnson allegedly knew for much of that time that its cosmetic talc products contained asbestos.

Cox openings

CVN screenshot of defense attorney Collin Cox delivering his opening statement

However defense attorney Collin Cox of Gibson Dunn & Crutcher insisted any suggested link between talc powder and mesothelioma is based on fundamentally flawed scientific studies, and he argued Newton was potentially exposed to asbestos while working as a repairman on military bases. Cox also suggested Newton’s family history of cancer made him statistically more likely to himself develop the disease.

The trial is taking place before Judge Martin Hoffman, and CVN’s gavel-to-gavel coverage will continue for the duration of the proceedings.

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Topics: Asbestos