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Hamilton v. Accu-Tek
United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York
62 F. Supp. 2d 802 (1999)
A group of people whose relatives were killed or injured by handguns (collectively, the families) filed a negligence action against 25 handgun manufacturers (the manufacturers). The families claimed that the manufacturers were negligent in their marketing and distribution practices, which created an underground market for handguns and made access to handguns easier for youths and violent criminals. A jury found 15 of the manufacturers were negligent and nine were the proximate cause of the families’ injuries. The jury awarded damages to only one of the plaintiffs, Steven Fox, who was 16 years old when he was shot by his 16-year-old friend with a handgun the friend bought from the trunk of a car and that disappeared after the shooting. The jury awarded $4 million in damages, apportioned between three manufacturers as follows: American Arms, Inc., 0.23 percent; Beretta U.S.A. Corp., 6.03 percent, and Taurus International Manufacturing, Inc. 6.8 percent. The jury found the manufacturers that restricted sales of their handguns not negligent. Following the verdict, the manufacturers moved for judgment as a matter of law.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Weinstein, J.)
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