The owner of Henry’s Turkey Service says he won’t pay the $240 million awarded to 32 of his disabled workers and said the government’s witnesses “terribly exaggerated” their living conditions in Atalissa, Iowa.

Kenneth Henry, 72, left U.S. District Court, Davenport, on Wednesday, with the assistance of a walker, saying he’ll appeal what he called an “unfair” verdict.

“Do you think I can write a check for that?” Henry said.

He said there’s nothing left of his company, with his wife, Gay Henry, adding, “It’s just me and him.”

Henry’s Turkey Service still exists as a corporation based in Goldthwaite, Texas. It also has done business as Hill Country Farms, and lawyers at the trial referred to it by both names.

“We’re all old, and we quit,” Henry said of the company, adding that he has suffered five heart attacks.

He said his poor health that he testified to Monday "made no difference" with the jury.

As his health kept him in Texas in 2008, he said he sent a supervisor named Warren Davis to begin shutting down the Iowa operation and close the bunkhouse after more than 30 years. He added that Davis lived in the bunkhouse with the disabled workers until the end and would have told him about any infestations or mold problems that were pointed out in testimony.

He sent Jane Ann Johnson, wife of the late owner T.H. Johnson, to Iowa to have a send-off party for the men in February 2009.

The next day, Iowa authorities raided the bunkhouse and the state fire marshal ordered it shut down.

Henry said that at any point in the 30 years the men lived in the bunkhouse, their families could have visited them or taken them home.

“I have to believe you would feel a little guilty about that, or a lot guilty about that,” Henry said to the families of the disabled workers.

 

(6) comments

Betttaxpayer
Betttaxpayer

I agree there should be government oversight on business but the report says this bunkhouse was used for 30 years. Where was Governor Vilsak and Governor Culver? Lots of Democratic governors and lawmakers didn't do there jobs here too!

zetar
zetar

How is a Democratic governor responsible for checking the bunk house of a turkey operation?

Why are you concerned about only Democratic governors?

To state the obvious Terry Bransted (Republican) has been governor the longest (1983-1999) during this time period (last 30 years). Shouldn't he be responsible.

Oh, I get it.... only Democrats are responsible because... Job Creators!

Mark Riley 4 State Senate
Mark Riley 4 State Senate

Good point I don't know that I would blanket the whole GOP. The libertarian's that subscribe to Ann Rann and Economic anarchy and barbarism are wing of the GOP that is taking it to "Whig party" status and oblivion. Hopefully evangelicals in the party can drag then back to decency. I went to a Scott County GOP taskforce meeting that was supposed to address getting Catholics, Blacks. Latinos, youth and Single woman voter registration increase. The gist of the meeting was that these groups are brainwashed by media and school systems. The consensus answer was that the GOP was technology challenged and they just needed to get on twitter and the social media. When I raised the point that maybe "its the message" and assuming voters are dumb and brainwashed is the path that cults an tribes take as they with draw from the mainstream and have to excuse their dwindling numbers.

This is a clear example of capitalism and the free market gone bad and its natural progression if it is not checked by Law and Government oversight. That's not socialism or big government, that's rule of law and protection from theft.. the.Labor of the workers stolen below its value. Something our founding fathers and the party of Lincoln and Eisenhower used to protect.

cd1001
cd1001

The Evangelical wing of the party is a major part of the problem, Mark. While claiming to be Christian, they fully back this very kind of greed. They call it "pure Capitalism."

Mark Riley 4 State Senate
Mark Riley 4 State Senate

No I disagree the "high Calvinism" of the English Industrial revolution that saw child labor and deplorable conditions spawned the largest Protestant Denomination the Western world ever witnessed. John Wesley the Founder of the Methodist Church re attached the traditional Catholic values to a protestant revolution that used "predestination " to justified the lot of the poor and the sinner and the heathen who are "predestined" to perish and Gods "elect" were anointed this wealth and salvation. At the same time William Booth started the Salvation Army another response to out of control capitalism. You have CS Lewis and JR Tolkien and his whole series of the Lord of The Rings and the Hobbit and Chronicles of Narnia: a response to industrialization and its effect on mankind, war and the environment. Jesus only act of violence was a dismantling of an abusive religious institution that preyed on the poor under the guise of religion. The practice of usury and its limit of 10% by the Catholic church is historical in nature and was only recently overturned in the 1970's. Jesus "the rich will not enter heaven" James "if a Christian sees another in need and can provide that need and does not he has sinned and the love of the Father is not in him" he isn't Christian translated. The term Sunday School comes from the practice of the church trying to teach children working in the industrial revolution how to read and write while at church. The notion of economic equality has its roots in Christianity and Evangelicals are beginning to unhook with Ann Ran libertarians.

zetar
zetar

Kenneth Henry is the classic Republican 'job creator'. There he is. Step right up and take a good look at unbridled greed.

And, like the good Republican job creator that he is, he is going to appeal and appeal this judgement until the clock runs out (he is mortal).

And, like the good Republican job creator that he is, he hasn't paid almost $2 million in fines levied against him so far.

My mother used to tell me that you are judged by the company that you keep. Soon Republicans and Tea Partiers and Libertarians (actually there are only three or four of them left posting here: Klaatu - who has been banned a couple of times and is on his second or third user name - John Rambo - I don't think that's really Sylvester Stallone, do you? - and some other random guy) will post here defending the poor, mistreated Mr. Henry.

The fines are excessive! He'll go bankrupt! No more jobs!

But, really, why do you want to even associate with scum like Kenneth Henry? Is that how you want to be judged? Isn't there any point where even the right-wing will say, "too much greed?"

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.