The families of nine victims of the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting have agreed to a $73 million settlement in a lawsuit against the maker of the rifle used to kill 20 first-graders and six teachers.
According to the Associated Press, the families and one survivor of the shooting sued Remington in 2015, saying the company should never have sold the dangerous weapon to the public. The lawsuit alleged that future mass shootings could be prevented if gun companies were more responsible with their products and their marketing of those products.
“Nothing will bring Dylan back,” said Nicole Hockley, whose 6-year-old son was killed in the shooting. “My hope for this lawsuit,” she said, “is that by facing and finally being penalized for the impact of their work, gun companies along with the insurance and banking industries that enable them will be forced to make their practices safer than they’ve ever been, which will save lives and stop more shootings.”
President Joe Biden also commented on the settlement, calling it “historic.”
“While this settlement does not erase the pain of that tragic day, it does begin the necessary work of holding gun manufacturers accountable for manufacturing weapons of war and irresponsibly marketing these firearms.”
The shooter in the 2012 killing at Sandy Hook, Adam Lanza, used the Remington rifle to first kill his mother and then open fire at the school. He killed himself with a handgun as police arrived to arrest him. The rifle was legally owned by his mother.
As part of the settlement, Remington also agreed to allow the families to release several documents obtained during the lawsuit, such as documents that show how the gun maker marketed the weapons.
Remington argued there was no evidence to suggest that its marketing contributed to the 2012 shooting. Remington had asked that the lawsuit be dismissed because of a federal law that gives broad immunity to the gun industry. The Connecticut Supreme Court, however, ruled that under state law, the gun maker could be sued on how it marketed the weapon. Remington also tried to appeal to the Supreme Court, but the court declined to hear the case.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/John Moore/Staff
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.