March 16, 2019

THEY EXIST TO KILL PEOPLE:

Lawsuit By Sandy Hook Victims Against Gun Manufacturer Allowed To Move Forward (RYAN LINDSAY, 3/14/19, NPR)

The suit is a high-stakes challenge to gun companies, which have rarely been held liable for crimes committed with their products, and could mark a new front in the battle over gun regulations and corporate accountability. It centers on the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), a 2005 law that shields manufacturers and retailers from civil liability in lawsuits brought by victims of gun violence. An eventual ruling against Remington could establish legal precedent, opening doors for more lawsuits against gun manufacturers, and expose the company's communications about its marketing plans.

"What I'm looking to find out in this whole process, essentially, is what went on inside Remington," said Bill Sherlach, whose wife Mary was the school psychologist shot and killed at Sandy Hook Elementary. "Let's see the internal documents, the internal emails, as to what the charges were to their marketing and ad execs."

The 4-3 majority largely upheld arguments made by lawyers for Remington that the company is protected from suit in many instances. The court ruled, however, that Congress did not intend the PLCAA to preclude state law. Ultimately, the majority said, the plaintiffs should have the opportunity to prove that Remington violated the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (CUTPA) by marketing a military-style weapon to civilians.

Connecticut law, the court wrote in the majority opinion, "does not permit advertisements that promote or encourage violent, criminal behavior."

Posted by at March 16, 2019 4:00 AM

  

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