Supreme Court to Weigh Taking Bellwether Case Against Gun Industry

Here’s another suit that will give us a pretty good look at how our new justices feel about business and RKBA. It only takes 4 justices to grant certiori and the court hear the case. I definitely figure Thomas will vote for it and Alito too. We’ll see if Kavanaugh and Gorsuch have the will as well. I might even get surprised and there be more because if the Connecticut Supreme Court isn’t slapped down and hard, you see not just suits against gun manufacturers, but enterprising lawyers filing suit against any other business that makes things that people might misuse, like cars.

Another interesting point is that Bushmaster, the manufacturer of the rifle used at Newtown, wasn’t even owned by Remington at that time.
If the justices can’t see that this is nothing more than ‘lawfare’ and the anti-gun forces are simply out to play the old ‘the process is the punishment game, we’ve got more than a lack of judicial fortitude to deal with.

A suit by Sandy Hook families against Remington, the maker of the AR-15-style rifle used in the massacre, tries to test a law shielding the firearms industry from liability.

The Supreme Court will consider this week whether to hear a case seeking to pierce firearm manufacturers’ legal immunity in the aftermath of shootings.

The case, Remington Arms Co. v. Soto, pits relatives of those killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting against Remington, the maker of the AR-15-style rifle used in the Dec. 14, 2012, massacre in Newtown, Conn. Twenty first graders and six educators died.

The lawsuit challenges a 2005 law protecting gun makers from legal liability when their weapons are used in crimes. The families argue that Remington violated Connecticut’s Unfair Trade Practices Act by recklessly marketing the rifle to disturbed young men like the Sandy Hook gunman through product placement in violent video games and advertising pitches like “consider your man card reissued.”

Most attention in the current Supreme Court term has been on whether the justices will expand Second Amendment rights. But should they allow the case to move forward to trial, either by refusing to hear Remington’s appeal or by hearing the case and ruling in the families’ favor, the lawsuit could provide a legal road map for victims and survivors seeking to hold gun makers accountable for gun violence.

The justices will meet on Friday to discuss whether to take the case. The court may grant or deny review shortly afterward, or continue considering the matter.

The appeal was brought by Remington after the Connecticut Supreme Court allowed the lawsuit to proceed to trial. Remington says the families’ case, if successful, would “eviscerate” the 2005 federal law.

The National Rifle Association, the Connecticut Citizens Defense League, Second Amendment law professors, nine states and 22 members of the House are among the signatories of a half-dozen legal briefs supporting Remington. The N.R.A. argued that the families’ challenge to the 2005 law could open the door to other lawsuits, potentially putting the firearm industry “out of business by unlimited and uncertain liability for criminal misuse of their products.”

Remington said in a legal filing that the Connecticut lawsuit was “widely recognized as a bellwether for the future of firearms litigation nationwide.”

The Connecticut Supreme Court agreed with a lower court judge that one element of the case cannot be tried, saying that the federal shield law precluded the families’ argument that Remington had “negligently entrusted” a weapon of war to an untrained civilian population.