I’d thought that this story was pretty much over back in June, but apparently the tenacity of the gun grabbing crowd truly knows no limits. Over the summer a Connecticut judge tossed out the lawsuit brought by family members of the victims of the Sandy Hook shooting against Remington Arms. The court found what nearly everyone had been saying from the beginning. The suit was useless because there was no way around the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). That law was put in place specifically to prevent gun control advocates from bankrupting firearms manufacturers and licensed dealers by trying to hold them accountable for the actions of criminals using their products.
Despite the clear ruling of the judge in that case, attorneys for the plaintiffs have demanded that their case be immediately moved to the next level. They want the state supreme court to take up the challenge. (Associated Press)
The families of some of the victims killed in the 2012 Newtown school shooting have asked a court to reinstate their wrongful-death lawsuit against the maker of the rifle used in the massacre.
Lawyers for a survivor and relatives of nine killed in the shooting filed the appeal Tuesday, asking the Connecticut Supreme Court to immediately take the case from a lower appellate court.
In October, a Superior Court judge dismissed the lawsuit against Remington Arms, citing an embattled federal law that shields gun manufacturers from most lawsuits over criminal use of their products.
One might think that this case should have remained in the dustbin after the definitive reading offered by the previous court, but we’re talking about Connecticut here. It’s one of the most liberal states when it comes to suppressing Second Amendment rights and has some of the worst gun control laws in the nation. That attitude can carry over to the courts easily and it’s not unthinkable that their justices might resurrect this challenge and send it off to the Supreme Court. (One more reminder of how careful President Elect Trump needs to be when filling that seat.)
The big question here is how any court can entertain this suit and on what grounds. The PLCAA is quite clear in its wording. If a firearm used in a crime was manufactured properly and the vendor sold it to someone who passed the appropriate checks and was legally entitled to purchase it, their responsibility for what’s done with it ends. There was only one person responsible for the Sandy Hook shooting and that was the shooter. We’ll never know exactly when and how he got those weapons from his mother (who legally purchased them) because he killed her as well.
All we can really hope for is a continued streak of common sense from the courts. (A tall order at times, I know.) If someone takes their properly functioning toaster, plugs it in and tosses it in the bathtub with their spouse, we don’t run out and sue KitchenAid. A properly functioning tool in the wrong hands can readily become dangerous if the person has evil intentions. That doesn’t make the manufacturer responsible.