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Court Report

A civil jury in Clayton County has decided that a pair of St. Olaf-area farmers were negligent because chemicals from a crop duster drifted beyond their leased property and onto that of a neighboring organic operation.

The jury began its deliberations in the case of Forest Hill Farm Products LLC v. Landsgard Brothers LLC at 9:10 a.m. Tuesday and turned in a verdict by 11:45 a.m. It found that Landgard Brothers, owned by Jordan and Jesse Landsgard were negligent and called for awarding of damages based on lost profits.

The jury had to clear up some confusion in its verdict and concluded that Forest Hills Farms did not lose enjoyment of its property because of the negligence and would not get those kind of damages.

District Court Judge Alan Heavens explained the confusion and its resolution in his order for judgment for Forest Hill Farm Products for $14,986.84. He ordered all court costs assessed to the defendants.

Landsgard has since filed for an injunction.

Forest Hill Farm Products, owned by Glenda M. Plozay and Keith L. Koch. filed the suit on Sept. 11, 2020, against Landsgard Brothers LLC. Forest Hill claimed that Landsgard Brothers was negligent because chemicals applied by helicopter onto adjacent farmland leased by the brothers drifted onto the Forest Hill property on June 17, 2020.

Forest Hill Farm includes certified organic pasture. It sells certified organic, grass-fed beef and lamb along with pastured pigs and poultry, according to its website.

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