Families of Newtown victims sue gunmaker, seller

A man holds a Bushmaster AR-15 Model A2 semi-automatic assault rifle at the Rocky Mountain Gun Show in Sandy, Utah.
George Frey | Bloomberg | Getty Images

The families of nine people killed in an attack on a Newtown, Connecticut, elementary school in 2012 filed a wrongful-death lawsuit on Monday against the company that manufactured the gun used in the attack.

The suit named gunmaker Bushmaster, a distributor and the local retailer that sold the weapon used by 20-year-old Adam Lanza to kill 20 first-graders and six educators in a Dec. 14, 2012, attack at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

The lawsuit contends that the AR-15 rifle Lanza used in his attack was designed to be a military weapon, had "little utility" for civil purposes and thus should not have been in Lanza's hands.

"There is one tragically predictable civilian activity in which the AR-15 reigns supreme: Mass shootings," the lawsuit said.

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Families of nine victims and a 10th person who was wounded filed the suit in Connecticut Superior Court in Bridgeport. The suit seeks unspecified monetary damages.

Bushmaster did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Lanza, who began the shooting spree by killing his mother at their home, ended his rampage by turning his gun on himself as he heard police approaching.

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Separately, the mother of one of 26 people killed two years ago at the Sandy Hook Elementary School is joining Connecticut's two U.S. senators to call for more action to end gun violence.

Nicole Hockley plans to join U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, and families of other shooting victims at the state Capitol on Monday morning for a news conference.

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The senators will unveil a pin they plan to wear on the floor of the U.S. Capitol as a reminder of the problem.

Hockley and other parents of Newtown victims recently took the first steps toward filing wrongful death lawsuits as a result of the December 14, 2012 shooting.

The parents have so far not said who they intend to sue or when the lawsuits will be filed.

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