A woman who was injured during the Brooklyn subway shooting in April has filed a civil lawsuit against Glock Inc., the maker of the handgun allegedly used in the attack, and its Austria-based parent company.
The suit, filed by Ilene Steur and her attorneys Tuesday, claims Glock’s marketing practices in its distribution and sale of guns have contributed to “creating and maintaining a public nuisance” and endangered health and public safety in New York state.
Steur, 49, was heading to work when Frank James allegedly fired at least 33 rounds from a 9mm Glock handgun into a crowded northbound N train. Twenty-nine people were hurt, and bullets directly injured 10 travelers.
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One of Steur’s attorneys, Sanford Rubenstein, told CNN that her gunshot-related injuries included a fractured spine from a bullet that entered through her buttocks and tore through her rectum.
“(The defendants) know that, as a consequence (of) selling Glock firearms to the civilian market, individuals unfit to operate these weapons gain access to them,” the civil suit read.
The legal document, released by the Brooklyn-based Rubenstein and Rynecki law firm, mentions James’ 12 previous arrests and years of social media content often featuring what the document described as “hate-filled” homophobic, misogynistic and racists rants.
“Let this lawsuit send a message to gun manufacturers,” Rubenstein told USA TODAY.
“As new statutes are enacted throughout our country, in my opinion, you will be held liable for damages to victims,” Rubenstein said. “Gun manufacturers have a moral responsibility to work with the government to stop the outrageous violence and mass killings that are occurring in our country.”
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Last week, a federal Northern District of New York judge rejected arguments from gun industry groups claiming that a 2021 state law allowing gun violence victims to file civil suits against gun manufacturers or dealers was unconstitutional, CNN reported.
In February, Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting victims’ families agreed to a $73 million settlement with Remington Arms, the company that manufactured the Bushmaster AR-15-style rifle used to kill 20 children and six teachers at the Newtown, Connecticut, school in December 2012.
Nicole Hockley, who lost her son Dylan in the Sandy Hook massacre, said the gun industry has been shielded from accountability for their role in shootings like the ones that occurred in Newtown and Brooklyn.
As of June 1, the Gun Violence Archive noted 231 mass shootings in the United States this year.