Gun maker Smith & Wesson sued over mass shooting at July 4 parade in Illinois

Smith & Wesson Brands is facing lawsuits from victims of the Highland Park attack that killed seven

Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

Victims of a mass shooting at a Fourth of July parade north of Chicago have filed a lawsuit against gun maker Smith & Wesson Brands for marketing firearms to young men with a propensity for violent behaviour.

A series of lawsuits against the company were filed on Wednesday over the attack in Highland Park, Illinois, which left seven dead and 48 injured.

It is the latest effort by victims of such attacks to pursue damages against gun makers, which have generally been protected from liability under federal law.

“This isn’t just Highland Park, Illinois,” said Antonio Romanucci, whose law firm is part of the legal team behind the lawsuits, which includes Everytown for Gun Safety.

“Now we’re seeing a pattern.”

The complaints filed in Lake County allege the marketing of weapons by Smith & Wesson and other manufacturers are “the beginning and pivotal links in a foreseeable and predictable chain of events resulting in numerous mass shootings in America each year”.

A representative for Smith & Wesson did not respond to a request for comment.

The plaintiffs also claim that advertisements from the manufacturer promote a dangerous “warrior mentality” that does nothing to discourage would-be shooters from acquiring weapons and using them to carry out deadly attacks.

The suit also names alleged shooter Robert Eugene Crimo III, along with his father and several gun shops. Mr Crimo was arrested the day of the attack and has been charged with murder.

Updated: September 30, 2022, 7:02 AM