Sandy Hook Families on Gun Maker: 'Lanza Heard Their Message'

Court hears arguments in lawsuit against Remington
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 14, 2017 2:52 PM CST
Court Hears Arguments in Sandy Hook Lawsuit Against Gun Maker
Ian Hockley, father of Dylan Hockley, one of the children killed in the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, speaks outside the Connecticut Supreme Court Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017, in Hartford, Conn.   (AP Photo/Dave Collins)

The families of nine Sandy Hook victims and one teacher who survived the deadly mass shooting presented their case to Connecticut Supreme Court justices Tuesday in their lawsuit against Remington, maker of the AR-15 weapon used by Adam Lanza to kill 20 children and six adults in 2012, the Hartford Courant reports. The victims' argument centers around the marketing campaign behind the AR-15, which the mother of one 6-year-old victim tells CBS News was "morally reprehensible." The lawsuit claims Remington linked "the AR-15 to macho vigilantism and military-style insurrection" in order to target a "younger demographic" and increase sales. One AR-15 ad included the tagline "consider your man card reissued." Another ad touted it as "the ultimate combat weapons system," according to Reuters.

Josh Koskoff, lawyer for the victims' families, compared it to "the Ford Motor Company advertising a car that can run over people" and said that kind of advertising attracts "dangerous users," including Lanza. "Adam Lanza heard their message," Koskoff told the justices Tuesday. "He idolized the military and Remington advertised the AR-15 as the weapon used by Army Rangers." He says Remington "knew exactly what they were doing" with its marketing strategies. James Vogts, lawyer for Remington, says the company is protected by the 2005 Lawful Commerce in Arms Act that shields gun makers from liability in shootings. "No matter how much we wished those children and teachers were still alive, the law needs to be applied," Vogts told justices. Following Tuesday's arguments, justices will decide whether the families' lawsuit can go to trial. (More Sandy Hook stories.)

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