CT Supreme Court rules in favor of Sandy Hook lawsuit against AR-15 style gun-maker

Posted: Updated:
BRIDGEPORT -

The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled that families of Sandy Hook victims can sue Remington Arms – the company that made the weapon used in the Newtown elementary school massacre in 2012.

Gun-makers have always closely guarded how they market their products and who they target. The ruling means thousands of internal documents, emails and marketing studies could finally become public.

Ian Hockley, the father of 6-year-old Dylan, said that he couldn’t say he was excited about the ruling.

More: Court filings

“I wish I was never here. But what we've said from the outset is, all we want is our day in court," he said.

Congress gives gun-makers broad immunity, unless they market their products recklessly. Remington argued they responsibly market a legal firearm.

"This kind of rifle is owned by millions of Americans all across the country for hunting, target shooting, and home defense purposes," said attorney Jim Vogts in November 2017.

The ruling reads, “If the defendants did indeed seek to expand the market for their assault weapons through advertising campaigns that encouraged consumers to use the weapons not for legal purposes such as self-defense, hunting, collecting, or target practice, but to launch offensive assaults against their perceived enemies, then we are aware of nothing in the text or legislative history of PLCAA to indicate that Congress intended to shield the defendants from liability for the tragedy that resulted.”

The ruling could force gun-makers to reveal what tactics they use to market assault-style weapons.

The Sandy Hook families' attorney released a statement saying: "The families' goal has always been to shed light on Remington's calculated and profit-driven strategy to expand the AR-15 market and court high-risk users, all at the expense of Americans' safety."

News 12 was unsuccessful in attempts to reach Remington's attorney. They could appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. Even if they don't, they will most likely ask a judge to seal whatever documents come out in the case.

 
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