Soto v. Bushmaster Firearms International, LLC

In 2012, gunman uses Bushmaster XM15-E2S semiautomatic rifle to murder 26 people at Newtown, Conn. elementary school. Can the manufacturer, distributor, and retailer of the rifle be sued under state law even though federal law broadly immunizes them of liability for crimes committed by third parties using their weapons? Connecticut Supreme Court (by a 4–3 vote): The suit can proceed. If the rifles were marketed for civilians to use in offensive, military-style combat missions (as the plaintiffs allege), such marketing violates state advertising law. And a seller knowingly violating state law applicable to a gun’s sale is not entitled to federal immunity.

Tags: 2019, Connecticut Supreme Court, Firearms, Immunity

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