Sandy Hook weapon case may be decided in two months

Josh Koskoff, attorney for the families of victims of the Sandy Hook massacre, speaks to reporters before Monday’s appearance in Bridgeport Superior Court. The families are seeking damages from the maker, distributor and dealer of the AR-15 assault rifle used in the shooting that claimed 26 lives. — Melvin Mason photo

Josh Koskoff, attorney for the families of victims of the Sandy Hook massacre, speaks to reporters before Monday’s appearance in Bridgeport Superior Court. The families are seeking damages from the maker, distributor and dealer of the AR-15 assault rifle used in the shooting that claimed 26 lives. — Melvin Mason photo

The families of those killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting massacre are asking for the manufacturer, distributor and dealer of the rifle used by the shooter to be held responsible.

Lawyers representing the victims’ families tried to make their case Monday at Bridgeport Superior Court before Judge Barbara Bellis. The families have sued Remington Arms Company, Bushmaster Firearms, Camfour Holding and Riverview Gun Sales of East Winsdor for damages for the 26 people who died at the elementary school in Newtown on Dec. 14, 2012. The victims, 20 children and six adults, were killed by Adam Lanza, who killed himself at Sandy Hook.

After more than two hours of arguments and discussion, Bellis said she plans to schedule a status conference within 60 days and expects to have a decision by that time.

Prior to the hearing, attorney Josh Koskoff said the AR-15-style rifle that was used during the massacre was designed “for war,” not hunting.

“It’s not a coincidence that Adam Lanza ended up using one of these weapons exclusively to massacre innocent people. It was as foreseeable as that the sun will come out tomorrow. Because it has happened in the past and it continues to happen,” Koskoff said.

He also said that Remington has targeted young men with these weapons and said they “taunt” people with the weapons, referencing marketing about “getting your man card reissued” by having one of the weapons. Koskoff also mentioned that Remington’s weapons have been featured in first-person shooting video games.

Attorneys for the defendants asked for the case to be dismissed, citing in part the federal Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). Remington attorney James Vogts said that previous claims like those presented today have been dismissed before.

Christopher Renzulli, the attorney representing Camfour, said the PLCAA is clear in that “a qualified civil liability action may not be brought in federal or state court. Doesn’t matter what you call it, doesn’t matter what the name is or the title is…on the complaint.” Renzulli said discovery into the matter will not change that.

Members of slain teacher Victoria Soto’s family were among the people on hand for Monday’s hearing. Soto’s mother Donna, sister Jillian and brother Carlos say they are happy that the case has reached the courtroom.

About author
Editor for the Stratford Star. Former reporter for the Darien Times.

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  • George Mulligan

    Why aren’t WEAPONS SYSTEMS and DRUG TRAFFIC eliminated as they KILL far more people ….Every death and injury is terrible.

    • Joe Pedoto

      I don’t know George. Why aren’t WS and DT eliminated? Is this a trick question? And what do WS, DT and the Civil War on YBM and P, especially since 1973 have to do with the case against Remington Arms? You might find this comment deleted as it is off topic…historically, it’s been true!

      • Stars and Stripes

        no Joe I m the only one who gets deleted

        • Joe Pedoto

          SAS: You are not the only one who has comments deleted. Over the years I’ve written what might be a Masters’ thesis on the topic of GM and have had my words deleted many, many times.

          It’s a tough job to be a comments moderator for a local paper. How do you strike the right balance? He also has a lot of other work to do, in addition to this…

          Also, please see my earlier comment on “Tone optimistic for Stratford High renovation.” Thank you.

          • George Mulligan

            I can empathize with Stars and Stripes, who had commented elsewhere that Mr. Pedoto seems to have an obsession with me and has used sarcasm excessively.

            I’m not an expert, yet does Mr. Pedoto show a pattern of a stalker with a unhealthy predispositions analogous to what I believe is called a sociopath?

            I’m not looking to insult nor antagonize Mr. Pedoto, to whom I have shown respect and restraint, compared to wild claims & suggestions that because I have different beliefs than he has that I am a terrorist and despite working within the rules all of my life, & under affidavit proven labor harassment since 1984, that he decides to lie about my life and twist my words using his interpretations.

            Despite being involved with Labor management, federal and states courts, Federal, state, and local police, and 100s of days of medical care since 2013, none of those professions
            has found any psychological aberrations in my beliefs ….. whereas Mr. Pedoto decides he’s god and judges me as a person going far beyond public and political issues, which are the focus of my writings and conversations.
            – See something say something = unless Joe Pedoto feels he as a blog tough guy and stalker decides he want to try to bully someone brave enough to raise unpopular issues and issues that most people simply never consider?
            – How many positions have I ever taken toward hurting people compared to helping people? I guess being civically active to help people makes me evil in Mr. Pedoto’s mind?
            – Mr. Pedoto has the right to think, say, or write what he wants, within the rules of this comment section and at least he has finally contributed a civic position or support for the spending of $ 126 million for a school which was $ 108 million in 2015 – no questions asked – because Stephanie
            is favored by Mr. Pedoto – everybody just endorse Joe.

          • Joe Pedoto

            Vote for George Mulligan for Mayor!

          • Joe Pedoto

            “I’m not looking to insult nor antagonize Mr. Pedoto,” says George as he calls me a blog tough guy and stalker, God, a bully, a judge, a sociopath and an obsessive with an excessive use of sarcasm.

            Now imagine what he would write if he did want to insult me?

            Anyone who knows me, knows that I am a weakling weighing 98 pounds. I got sand in my face when kicked to the ground. My girl split on me, too. I was in good shape, but the wrong shape.

            Then a magazine advert with a new muscle plan said,
            “In just seven days, I can make you a Man!”

      • George Mulligan

        Why aren’t WS and DT eliminated?

        > Would it be an unreasonable guess Weapons and Drugs are CASH COWS for POLITICAL PARTIES FUNDERS & MILITARY?

        And what do WS, DT and the Civil War on YBM and P, especially since 1973 have to do with the case against Remington Arms.

        > Would it be unreasonable to argue Remington Arms supplied Weapons and Drug Trafficking uses weapons paid for by profits from the illegal business.
        > 1972 was the tainted Nixon election where his VP, AG, Staff, and operatives related to DOD, CIA, FBI, & IRS went to jail.
        * Nixon who was Eisenhower’s VP had the tapes installed and IF, IF, IF the President is surrounded by people like those and expected to be used for counter intuitive Global reasons, beyond my fathom …. and IF, IF, IF Roe vs. Wade was counter point to Mao’s population control as a Rockefeller population control decision killing 59 million US fetus even more deadly than 30 million killed by US Military since WW II & the military uses GUNS & WEAPONS, like the Sandy Hook BUSH MASTER – there is a stretch, yet they all KILL PEOPLE …… 1973 was the beginning of MASSIVE BLACK MALE INCARCERATION according to charts and research. JAIL breeds more criminals where less violent are exposed to violent …

        Joe one area we do agree is that there is racism.

        Congress didn’t seem to care about U S GUN Violence until one of their own, AZ Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords & 18 constituents
        were SHOT.
        * I was amazed she was the first Senator or Congress person who was shot despite the rampant criminality perpetrated over 225 years
        and several Presidents.

        White American couldn’t relate to the WARS going on in BLACK AMERICA, where the good people are terrorized by the PUNKS that’s directly against everything Doctor Martin Luther King Jr. stood for and helped change lives.
        * Adam Lanza fatally shot 20 children aged between 6 and 7 years old, as well as six adult staff members.
        * White America and all Americans can relate to 6 & & year olds.
        * Not a conspiracy – a very tragic & sad social commentary!

        Maybe all Americans will relate to the deaths caused by Weapons
        Trading around the world and view foreign people as humans who are often fodder of their Governments …. too!

        • Joe Pedoto

          According to George’s carefully reasoned prosthesis, I am a stalker, a sociopath and God Almighty (and two out of three ain’t bad*). So when I tell you to vote for George Mulligan for Mayor, you’d better do it!

          *Baby, we can talk all night
          But that ain’t gettin’ us nowhere…

          • George Mulligan

            There you go again … 😉

  • George Mulligan

    Sadly no one paid attention to the CIVIL WAR on young black men and people since late 1960s and especially 1973.

    Sandy Hook murder of 8 year old white children and suburban teachers pushed the weapons issue into main stream consciousness.

    Congress suddenly became interested in limiting domestic gun availability after one of their own, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was shot.

    There are people who create problems, so they can profit or perpetuate control of the various systems and groups they control or influence. Historically, it’s been true!

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