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On March 14, 2017, Kramer Levin filed an application for leave to file an amicus brief in the Connecticut State Supreme Court on behalf of ten emergency physicians and trauma surgeons, including those who were responsible for the treatment of victims of the Sandy Hook, Aurora, Columbine and San Bernardino mass shootings. The brief would support the appeal of the families of the victims of the Sandy Hook elementary school massacre from the dismissal of their claims against the makers and sellers of the AR-15 military assault rifle that was used to kill their children.
The amicus brief argues that the AR-15 and similar military assault weapons create a unique class of unacceptable emergencies and trauma, and that the extraordinary power of these military assault rifles, which can eviscerate any bone, organ, vessel, or tissue with which the bullets come in close proximity, not only makes them unnecessary for hunting and self-defense, but also poses a severe public health risk to innocent civilians. The brief includes summaries of the experience each of the amici has had with victims who have been shot with the AR-15, and the physical and psychological harm they have observed as a result of that exposure. The brief asks the Connecticut Supreme Court to apply the common law of negligent entrustment to hold the makers and sellers of the AR-15 accountable for this risk, and requests the Court to reverse the Superior Court’s decision, which had dismissed the Sandy Hook families’ claims against the makers and sellers of the AR-15, and remand the case for further proceedings.
Litigation partner Michael J. Dell and his daughter, Rebecca T. Dell, an associate at Paul Weiss, worked on the application and brief.
The application is available here.
The brief is available here.