Judge Tosses Sandy Hook Lawsuit in Wise Ruling
A decision by a Connecticut Superior Court judge will likely spark new debate over laws that protect gun manufacturers from certain kinds of liability. Judge Barbara Bellis dismissed a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the victims of the Sandy Hook massacre on Friday, saying the defendants – Remington Arms, among others – were protected from this specific litigation by the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act.
“The present case seeks damages for harms, including the deaths of the plaintiffs’ decedents that were caused solely by the criminal misuse of a weapon by Adam Lanza,” Bellis wrote. “This action falls squarely within the broad immunity provided by PLCAA.”
The families went into the lawsuit fully aware of Remington’s immunity, but they said the Sandy Hook case represented an exception to the PLCAA. According to the 2005 law, gun manufacturers can still be held liable for crimes committed with their weapons if there is evidence that they know their guns are likely to be used in such a way that could cause harm to their users or others.
In her decision, Bellis disagreed that Remington Arms could have reasonably known that their Bushmaster XM15-E2S would have been used by Lanza to kill more than 20 children in Newtown, Conn. on that fateful day in 2012.
Lawyers for the families filed an immediate appeal.
“While the families are obviously disappointed with the judge’s decision, this is not the end of the fight,” said one of those lawyers – Joshua Koskoff. “We will appeal this decision immediately and continue our work to help prevent the next Sandy Hook from happening.”
In a tweet sent shortly after the ruling, Hillary Clinton said that justice had been denied the families. “It’s incomprehensible that our laws would protect gun makers over Sandy Hook families,” she said. “We need to fix this.”
Hillary has made it very clear that she means to dismantle legal immunity for gun manufacturers – one of the few issues in the primaries where she could claim ground to the left of challenger Bernie Sanders. In her view, the PLCAA provides gun manufacturers with a special kind of protection unavailable to any other industry in the country.
This, of course, is a blatant lie.
In a sane world, the PLCAA wouldn’t even be necessary because common sense would tell us that a rifle manufacturer could not possibly be responsible for crimes committed with one of their rifles. Unless Remington sells a defective product or knowingly dodges the law to put one of their guns in the hands of someone who should not have one…there’s no liability. How could there be? You might as well sue Keurig if someone bashes you in the head with one of their coffeemakers.
That Hillary Clinton is vowing to overturn the PLCAA is proof that she’s unfit to be president of the United States.