Bill Johnson, CEO of PG&E Corp., the utility's parent company, personally entered each of the pleadings at a hearing in Chico, the result of Butte County prosecutors' criminal investigation into the 2018 Camp Fire. The fire nearly leveled the town of Paradise and surrounding areas more than 1½ years ago, and investigators found that it was started by an old power line that PG&E allowed to deteriorate.
One by one, the judge read aloud the names of the victims, mostly elderly and infirm, who had suffered horrific, preventable deaths. The court projected their photos onto the wall. Mask pulled down, Johnson took in each picture as he entered the 85 guilty pleas on behalf of his company.
After accepting PG&E's guilt, which took more than a half-hour, Johnson said [a meaningless platitude.]
The company has agreed to pay the maximum fine of $3.5 million and another $500,000 to reimburse the district attorney's office. PG&E is already on probation because of felony convictions that arose from the deadly 2010 San Bruno gas pipeline explosion.
Remember, kids: you should believe that corporations are people as soon as Texas executes one.