On Tuesday, PG&E Corp. will plead guilty 84 separate times to involuntary manslaughter -- the deadliest corporate crime in U.S. history.

That admission in a California courtroom will mark the end of one portion of the power company’s legal travails after its equipment sparked the largest wildfire in state history, consuming the town of Paradise. Many who lost loved ones or homes to the 2018 conflagration may not find much comfort in the utility paying a $4 million fine.

But for some, a small measure of justice will come from witnessing PG&E’s comeuppance in court.

“It doesn’t bring my daughter back -- that’s the bottom line,” said Tom LeBlanc, whose stepdaughter, Kimberly Wehr, 53 years old and disabled, was killed at her home in the Camp Fire on Nov. 8, 2018. At the same time, Leblanc said in an interview, PG&E’s plea “means something because they’re admitting the guilt.”

The plea is unparalleled for a publicly traded company. Over a period of about 40 years that prosecutors in the U.S. have tried to charge companies for killing people -- mostly without success -- the closest comparison is BP Plc’s manslaughter plea after 11 workers were killed in the 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion.

“This was extraordinarily difficult for PG&E to swallow,” Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey, who investigated the fire and negotiated the plea, said in an interview. For the company it amounts to conceding that “the evidence will show beyond a reasonable doubt that we killed 84 people and burned down a town by a criminally reckless fire,” he said.

The utility already has agreed to settle claims from insurers, individual fire victims and local government agencies for more than $25 billion. It also received a $1.9 billion penalty from the California Public Utilities Commission. The criminal case is the company’s last unfinished business as it races to exit from bankruptcy in the wake of a series of wildfires in recent years.

PG&E calls the plea agreement “an important step in taking responsibility for the past and working to create a better future for all concerned.”

“We want to do right by the victims and the communities,” the company said in a statement.

And yet, as fire season returns, trepidation runs as far and wide as PG&E’s 125,000 miles (200,000 kilometers) of electrical grid about whether it has been sufficiently punished, and reformed, to prevent it from causing another deadly blaze. The plea agreement has been roundly criticized on social media and by a former victim representative in the company’s bankruptcy case, Karen Gowins, as barely a slap on the wrist.

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