Newtown Families’ Lawsuit Against AR-15-Style Gun Maker Dismissed

Sandy Hook Families' Lawsuit Against Gun Maker Dismissed

A Connecticut judge has dismissed a lawsuit that was filed against the manufacturer and seller of the weapon used in the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012.

In April 2016, a judge allowed the case to proceed against Remington Arms, maker of the Bushmaster AR-15 rifle, as well as the distributor and seller, Camfour and Riverview Sales, the  firearms distributor and the company that owned the gun store. The families of the children killed in the mass shooting sought damages and relief. Their argument was that the weapon used by Adam Lanza to kill 26 people, including 20 children, at Sandy Hook was a military-grade weapon that should not have been sold to civilians.

Last month, Superior Court Judge Barbara Bellis concluded that the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, passed by Congress, prohibits lawsuits against the makers, distributors and sellers of guns “for the harm solely caused by the criminal or unlawful misuse of firearm products … by others when the product functioned as designed and intended.”

Other examples include lawsuits makers of automobiles, ATVs and BB guns when people are harmed. Bellis said the validity of the plaintiffs’ arguments was based on whether the companies that made these potentially dangerous products could know or somehow be aware of what the end user’s motivations are.If the product is misused, that is not the manufacturer’s fault, basically.