Seven people were killed and 48 others injured in the Highland Park shooting — and Liz radish is one of them. Turnipseed, 40, was standing next to her husband and three-year-old daughter when a bullet entered the right side of her pelvis during Illinois’ annual Independence Day celebration. Her husband grabbed their baby, ran away from the crowd, and handed her over to someone else crouched behind a metal and concrete couch. Then he ran back, through the carnage, to the Radish.
After months of wound care, six doctor appointments a week, and emotional distress, Turnipseed is suing Smith & Wesson. Her complaint — filed Wednesday by Edelson PC, the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, and dental practitioners — alleges that Smith & Wesson used deceptive tactics to promote the M rifle & P15, a semi-automatic rifle the suit says was used in the Highland Park shooting; it is also used in Parkland, San Bernardino, Powayand dawn mass shooting. And while Turnipseed isn’t the first to try to hold the firearms industry accountable for a mass shooting amid America’s growing gun violence, her case could be the case. the first lawsuit of its kind to be heard by jury since the passage of the Legislative Arms Trade Act Protection Regulation (PLCAA), a 2005 law that allows gun manufacturers to legal immunity from civil litigation.
“Unfortunately, there will be a lot more mass shootings, and the legal work and basis we can lay out here will immediately apply to any other cases that occur in the future. future,” said Ari Scharg, a partner at Edelson PC. “[A gun-related case will] up to the Supreme Court at some point. “
After the Newtown Massacre, the Connecticut Supreme Court create a new path for being involved in the gun industry, accepting the argument that gun manufacturer Remington could be sued for violating applicable consumer protection laws in the state of Connecticut; Turnipseed’s lawsuit alleges violations of Illinois’ consumer fraud laws.
Turnipseed joins a growing coalition of plaintiffs who have sought to crack down on the industry’s questionable advertising in recent years. Victims of shootings at Poway synagogue reach a settlement this August with the shooter’s parents, while their case against Smith & Wesson, over its advertising, is still underway. The families of victims of the 2012 Sandy Hook shooting have also sued gun manufacturer Remington for their marketing tactics; Remington settled, with the company’s insurers reportedly agreeing to pay the plaintiffs 73 million dollars in February. Meanwhile, the state of New Jersey is seeking internal documents on how Smith & Wesson markets its products and is currently immersed in a backside–and–go out court battle over whether such information can be obtained. Over the years, Brady, along with other gun violence prevention groups, has many times beg give FTC to investigate marketing practices of the gun industry.
“It is through litigation that change happens. Products become safer, marketing is no longer deceptive, and the gun industry will stop profiting from the loss of life.” Erin Davis, Senior Counsel for Appellate Trials and Litigations at Brady. Mass shootings continue to plague the country, however, Davis said, the marketing practices “have not changed. And really, one of the only ways for practice to change is to sue like this.”
In the past, companies like Smith & Wesson have largely ignored such provisions, thanks to PLCAA. Chairperson Joe Biden he himself has speak that the gun industry is “the only industry in the United States that is exempt from the general public from being sued. The only thing.” While it’s not exactly– technically the gun industry could be sued for its products – his statement really highlights the legal ingenuity required when it comes to taking gun manufacturers to court. “This is like putting a needle through a hole very, very, very tight,” says Scharg, referring to the finicky nature of the claims.
At its core, the lawsuit alleges Smith & Wesson has, through Advertisement, “Market your guns in a way that attracts and activates dangerous people like shooters.” The lawsuit argues that the company “designs advertisements for its products to mimic” the aesthetic of first-person shooter video games, like in the Call of Duty franchise where the shooter played keen on. What’s more, the complaint alleges that the gun maker’s ad not only specifically targeted “emotionally problematic young men” but also “gambling real-life gun use.” ‘ and ‘honoring the lone gunman’. Those claims are in line with a recent trend of young people perpetrating a disproportionate number of mass shootings. Based on New York Times, 6 of the 9 deadliest mass shootings in the US since 2018 were committed by older people 21 years old or younger; Between 1949 and 2017, only 2 of the 30 deadliest mass shootings were committed by people under the age of 21.