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Tipsheet

Brooklyn Shooting Victim Sues Gunmaker for Criminal's Actions

AP Photo/Seth Wenig

A victim of the Brooklyn subway shooting filed a lawsuit Tuesday against Glock Inc. for the injuries she sustained after violent gunman Frank James' alleged attack.

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On April 12, James allegedly fired multiple rounds on a subway car in Brooklyn, wounding 10. Prior to the attack, he had posted a number of YouTube videos with what AP calls "black nationalist rhetoric, violent language, and bigoted comments." James is currently in jail with no bail and has pled not guilty to charges of committing a terrorist attack or other violence against a mass transportation system and discharging a firearm during a violent crime.

One victim of the shooting, Ilene Steur, is suing Glock Inc., the maker of the gun James allegedly used in the attack, for "creating and maintaining a public nuisance in the State of New York" which her attorneys claim the company has done through their marketing strategies.

New York is the only state with legislation allowing people to bring civil lawsuits against gun manufacturers to hold them responsible for individuals’ use of their products. In all other states, federal law protects manufacturers from being liable for public harm caused by users of their products.

The lawsuit alleges "Glock strategically advertises its products through placement in movies and rap music" and says it makes their products appealing to "prospective purchasers with criminal intent." It also alleges Glock knowingly provides weapons to people who would use them for mass shootings (via CNN):

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The lawsuit also alleges that the makers of Glock firearms are aware mass shootings have become "a frightening yet predictable part of modern life," and knowing this, Glock sells its firearms to the civilian market knowing they might end up in the hands of "individuals unfit to operate."

Steur's attorney further described the aim of the lawsuit, saying Glock Inc. allows violent people like James to break the law:

The lawsuit is an effort to hold accountable to a victim a gun manufacturer whose marketing strategies we allege, results in guns being put in the hands of those who kill and maim innocent victims. Those who manufacture and distribute guns have a moral responsibility to work with government to end the epidemic of gun violence and mass killings in our county.

Despite the severity of the Brooklyn shooting, talk of the event in the media has mostly disappeared in the past few weeks.

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