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Litigation Against the Gun Industry

Smith & Wesson "Clarification" of Agreement Between Government and Gunmaker Exposes "Landmark" Settlement to be a Sham

New VPC Report Lays Out Minimal Terms for Settlement of Litigation Against Gun Industry - Press Release

Landmark Verdict Against Gun Industry Paves Way for Further Litigation - Press Release

National Rifle Association And The Gun Industry Launch Double-Barreled Attack on Legal Rights of Gun Violence Victims - Fact Sheet


Summary of Lawsuits Filed by Cities and Counties Against the Gun Industry

Follow the links to view the complaints in Adobe PDF format.

CASE NAME LOCATION

ORIGINAL DATE FILED

COURT FILED

DEFENDANTS

LEGAL THEORIES

CURRENT STATUS

Morial
v.
Smith & Wesson Corp.*

New Orleans, Louisiana

October 30, 1998

District Court for the Parish of New Orleans

gun manufacturers, trade associations, retailers, pawn shops

product liability, negligence

The Louisiana Supreme Court dismissed the case in light of recent state legislation barring such suits. The U.S. Supreme Court  declined review.

City of Chicago
& Cook County
v.
Beretta U.S.A. Corp.

Chicago, Illinois

November 12,

1998

Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois

gun manufacturers, distributors,  retailers

public nuisance, negligent entrustment

The county court dismissed the case and plaintiffs appealed. The Illinois Appellate Court reinstated the action in November 2002, which is now pending.

City of Atlanta
v.
Smith & Wesson
Corp.

Atlanta, Georgia

February 4, 1999

State Court of Fulton County

gun manufacturers, trade associations

defective design, negligent failure to warn

The Georgia Court of Appeals dismissed the case in February 2002 because of  state legislation barring lawsuits against the gun industry. The case may be appealed to the Supreme Court of Georgia.

Ganim & City of Bridgeport
v.
Smith &
Wesson
Inc.

Bridgeport, Connecticut

January 27, 1999

Superior Court, Judicial District of Fairfield

gun manufacturers, trade associations, retailers, pawn shops

product liability, unfair trade practices, public nuisance, conspiracy, unjust enrichment, negligence

The Supreme Court of Connecticut dismissed the case for lack of standing.

Penelas
v.
Arms Tech., Inc.


Miami - Dade County, Florida

January 26, 1999

Circuit Court of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, Miami-Dade County

gun manufacturers, trade associations

Negligence, public nuisance

The District Court of Appeals dismissed the case in February 2001. The Florida Supreme Court has declined to hear plaintiff’s appeal. 

White
v.
Hi-Point Firearms

Cleveland, Ohio

May 8, 1999

Court of Common Pleas, Cuyahoga County

gun manufacturers, trade associations

product liability, negligent design, unjust enrichment, nuisance abatement, public nuisance, negligence

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio denied defendant’s motion to dismiss. The case is  pending.  

Archer
v.
Arms Tech., Inc.

Detroit, Michigan

April 26, 1999

Circuit Court, Wayne County

gun manufacturers, retailers

public nuisance, negligence, alternative liability, concert of action

The case is before the Court of Appeals in Michigan on interlocutory appeal. Awaiting a decision on whether newly enacted state legislation can preempt the lawsuit.

McNamara
v.
Arms Tech., Inc.

Wayne County, Michigan

April 26, 1999

Circuit Court, Wayne County

gun manufacturers, retailers

public nuisance, negligence, alternative liability, concert of action

Consolidated with Archer v. Arms Tech. See above.

City of Cincinnati
v.
Beretta U.S.A. Corp.

Cincinnati, Ohio

April 28, 1999

Court of Common Pleas, Hamilton County

gun manufacturers, trade associations

strict liability, negligence, deceptive advertising, nuisance, fraud, public nuisance, negligent misrepresentation, unjust enrichment

In July 2002,  Ohio Supreme Court overturned a lower court’s decision to grant motion for dismissal.  The case will now proceed before the Ohio Supreme Court.

City of St. Louis
v.
Cernicek

St. Louis, Missouri

April 30, 1999

Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis

gun manufacturers, trade associations, retailers

public nuisance, nuisance abatement, civil conspiracy, negligence, unjust enrichment

Defendants attempted to remove the case to federal court.  The case  was remanded to state court. Defendants then filed motion to dismiss. Ruling is pending.  

People of the State of California
v.
Arcadia Mach. & Tool

Los Angeles, Compton, West Hollywood, Inglewood, California

May 25, 1999

Superior Court of the State of California, City and County of Los Angeles

gun manufacturers, trade associations, distributors

public nuisance, deceptive advertising, fraudulent business practices (includes claims for fines under California Business and Professional Code)

The California cases were consolidated before the Superior Court  of San Diego.

Summary judgment was granted in favor of gun manufacturers and trade associations in March 2003. The trial will proceed against  gun distributors.

People of the State of California
v.
Arcadia Mach. & Tool

San Francisco, Berkeley, Sacramento, Oakland, E. Palo Alto, San Mateo County, Alameda County, California

May 25,1999

California Superior Court, City and County of San Francisco

gun manufacturers, trade associations, retailers

public nuisance, deceptive advertising, fraudulent business practices (includes claims for fines under California Business and Professional Code).

(See above.)

City of Boston
v.
Smith &
 Wesson Corp.

Boston, Massachusetts

June 3, 1999

Superior Court Department, Suffolk County, Mass.

gun manufacturers, trade associations

public nuisance, negligent distribution, defective design, failure to warn, negligence, unjust enrichment

After several favorable rulings, the City of Boston settled the case in 2002 and the suit was withdrawn.

Camden County Board of Chosen Freeholders
v.
Beretta U.S.A. Corp.

Camden County, New Jersey

June 2, 1999

U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey

gun manufacturers, distributors, retailers

nuisance, defective products, negligence, assault, intentional interference with economic advantage

After a dismissal, plaintiffs appealed to the U.S. Third Circuit. The Third Circuit affirmed the dismissal in 2001. Plaintiffs have requested a rehearing.

James & City of Newark
v.
Arcadia Mach. & Tool

Newark, New Jersey

June 9, 1999

Superior Court of New Jersey Law Division, Essex County

gun manufacturers, trade associations, retailer

defective design, failure to warn, negligent distribution, negligence, nuisance, unjust enrichment

Defendants filed motion to dismiss which was denied. Defendants appealed this decision.  In March 2003,  the Appellate Division affirmed the trial court’s decision. The case will now proceed.

City of Camden
v.
Beretta U.S.A. Corp.

Camden, New Jersey

June 21, 1999

Superior Court, of New Jersey Law Division,  Camden County

gun manufacturers, trade association, distributors, retailers

nuisance violation of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, products liability, negligent distribution and marketing, negligent design and failure to warn, unjust enrichment

The case is now stayed pending a decision in James & City of Newark v. Arcadia Mach. & Tool (See above).

People of the State of California
v.
Arcadia Mach. & Tool

County of Los Angeles, California

August 6, 1999

Superior Court of the State of California, County of Los Angeles 

gun manufacturers, trade associations, retailers

public nuisance,  claims for fines under California Business and Professional Code

(See California cases above.)

City of Gary
v.
Smith & Wesson Corp.

Gary, Indiana

August 27, 1999

Lake County Superior Court, Civil Division

gun manufacturers, distributors, trade associations retailers, “Does 1-250”

public nuisance, negligent distribution and marketing, negligence

Plaintiffs settled with one defendant settled in 1999.

The case is now before the Supreme Court of Indiana which will decide whether the City’s suit against gun manufacturers can proceed.  The case was appealed to the Supreme Court by the City.

Sills
v.
Smith & Wesson Corp.

Wilmington, Delaware

September  29, 1999

Delaware Superior Court, New Castle County

gun manufacturers, distributors, trade organizations

product liability, negligence, nuisance, fraud, unjust enrichment, civil conspiracy

In November 2002,  the court granted defendants’ motion for summary judgment. 

District of Columbia
v.

Beretta U.S.A. Corp.

Washington, DC

January 1, 2000

Superior Court of the District of Columbia, Civil Division

gun manufacturers, "Does 1-100"

public nuisance, negligent distribution and marketing, violation of DC’s Strict Liability Act of 1990

In December 2002, the court dismissed the City’s claims. The City has appealed.

City of Philadelphia
v.
Beretta U.S.A. Corp.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

April 11, 2000

Court of Common Pleas, Philadelphia County

manufacturers

public nuisance, negligence

The court dismissed the case. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit upheld the dismissal.

City of New York
v.
B.L. Jennings, Inc.

New York, New York

June 19, 2000

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York

manufacturers, distributors, trade associations

public nuisance, negligence, strict liability, false advertising, unjust enrichment

The case is in discovery.

State of New York
v.
Sturm, Ruger & Co.

New York

June 26, 2000

N.Y. Sup. Ct., N.Y. County

manufacturers, distributors

Statutory public nuisance, common-law public nuisance

Lower court dismissed the case. Plaintiffs appealed to Appellate Division. Oral arguments heard May 2002.

City of Jersey City
v.
Smith & Wesson Corp.

Jersey City, New Jersey

March 28, 2002

Superior Court of New Jersey

manufacturers, distributors, trade associations

public nuisance

Case stayed pending James & City of Newark v. Arcadia Mach. & Tool decision. (See above).

* Note: The New Orleans complaint is on legal sized (8.5" x 14") paper. To print on to letter sized paper check the "Shrink to fit" box in the print dialog box.

 






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