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Case of Jeffrey Lill Still Unresolved

Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

More than two years after Jeffrey Lill was sickened by liquid that leaked from a package at an Orlando U.S. Postal Service facility, his health continues to deteriorate.

He’s no closer to knowing the name of any chemicals he may have been exposed to.

Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

And despite two whistle-blowers and supporting documents turned up last year by the Florida Center for Investigative Reporting, the Postal Service continues to deny there was any such leaking package.

And an Occupational Safety and Health Administration investigation last year — which relied largely on information provided by the Postal Service — turned up no additional information that would help identify the potential toxic substance.

That's the word from an article in the Rochester, N.Y. Democrat and Chronicle.

Lill, now 45, lives with his mother in her home near Rochester. But he wasn't always like this. In 2011, he was working as a supervisor for the U.S. Postal Supervisor at an Orlando sorting facility. One day he noticed a stench coming from a package.

No one else has ever verified this, but Lill says the return address on the package said "Yemen." Four months earlier, two bombs from Yemen had been sent through FedEx and UPS.

Lill says thispackage was leaking a brown ooze.

"It was - wow, I'm searching for words - caustic," he says, slowly. "Thick."

You can read the original story from WUSF HERE.

According to the Democrat-Chronicle story:

In an effort to force action, Lill in February filed a $20 million claim against the Postal Service under the federal Tort Claims Act.

His attorney, Dennis Clary of Lewiston, Niagara County, said the Postal Service has done nothing but stonewall his client, potentially causing him continuing and greater injury.

“To be treated for toxic exposure, you need to know what toxin you were exposed to, and Jeff’s never been told,” said Clary.

He said the Postal Service has six months to either accept or deny the tort claim. If the agency denies it, Clary said he will file a civil suit in federal court.

“I’m prepared to shove this thing down someone’s throat if I have to,” he said. “This is disgusting. One of those things you just can’t allow to go on this way.”

A spokesman for the Postal Service did not respond to a request for comment.

Copyright 2013 WUSF Public Media - WUSF 89.7

Steve Newborn is WUSF's assistant news director as well as a reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues and politics in the Tampa Bay area.