Ninth Circuit Dismisses Lawsuit By Shooting Victims Against Glock

290px-Glock22inOliveDrabA panel on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has voted 2-1 to dismiss a lawsuit against Glock Inc. by victims of a 1999 shooting rampage by Buford Furrow, a white supremacist.

In 1999, Furrow brought at least seven guns into a Jewish center in Granada Hills and wounded three children, a teenager, and an adult. He later shot and filled Joseph Ileto, 39.

The opinion written by Judge Susan Graber is based on The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act 2005, a law passed by Congress to protected federally licensed gun manufacturers and sellers from liability for criminals’ shootings. This lawsuit was expressly cited by sponsors as part of the motivation for the new law.

The lawsuit claimed that Glock made more guns than they could sell on the legitimate market with the intention of selling the remainder on the “secondary market” where criminals often buy their guns.

While I find the basis of the lawsuit questionable, they did have an interesting argument that the case fell into an exception where a company knowingly violates another state or federal weapons-related law.

In dissent, Judge Marsha Berzon objected to the retroactive effect of the lawsuit, a legitimate concern. Congress is increasingly acting to block pending cases in favor of powerful lobbies. Even under a rational basis test, Judge Berzon rejects the claim of the defendant:

The majority resolves this question by concluding that the PLCAA’s mandatory dismissal provision is rationally related to a legitimate government interest and that no heightened level of constitutional scrutiny is warranted. The majority’s cursory discussion of the constitutional issue belies the
sweeping nature of what it reads the PLCAA to do, and the difficult questions of constitutional law required to uphold that reading. Neither the Supreme Court nor this Circuit has ever made clear that rational basis review is the proper standard on which to review a federal statute that retroactively requires the dismissal of pending causes of action for injuries cognizable at common law but does not leave any alternative means of redress. Moreover, even if we were to assume that
no heightened level of scrutiny is appropriate, I am not convinced that such a statute would survive the rational basis review outlined by the Supreme Court in Duke Power Co. v.
Carolina Envtl. Study Group, 438 U.S. 59 (1978).

For the full story, click here.

Here is the opinion 06-56872.

14 thoughts on “Ninth Circuit Dismisses Lawsuit By Shooting Victims Against Glock”

  1. Sorry this took so long to get back:
    That econ thing is a re-hash sent to me by my better half’s father, and was posted as “humor” among other things.

    LawSchoolMom; I recently purchased a Ruger 10/22 rifle for my better half. The first five pages of the users instruction manual are all safety related, and there are usually even more safety reminders on just about every page as well.

    FFLEO: Don’t you just have to love spelling Nazi’s? LOL! 😀

    Great points Sally and Bron98. In fact, I used all of those at an appearance before a Colorado legislature that I made some years ago. 😀

  2. GWLawMom:

    Just because you need a license to operate a vehicle, doesn’t mean that those without licenses avoid driving cars.

    Do you honestly believe that all those criminals who carry handguns on themselves have the proper permit to do so? I think not.

    Handgun permits are for those who choose to obey the laws.

    And bullets do have a warning on them. I’d type what the box in front of me says, but it’s rather lengthy. And guns come with them as well.

  3. GWLawSchoolMom:

    I havent read a box of bullets for awhile but they probably have some type of warning on them but most likely not the type you are thinking of.

    Most people that I know take a gun safety class before buying a fire arm. I dont think there are as many gun deaths as you might think and some of the literature I have read includes gang deaths which is why the child death rate looks so high.

    there is a lot of misinformation about fire arms on both sides of the issue. But the founders gave us the right for a reason.

    “Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.”

    B. Franklin

  4. JR,

    It’s often simple things,aka It is often simple things

    Heck far, JR, you done left out tha’ “the” so’s y’alls’ grammer aint up tuh snuff in my book of larnin’ Thangs is plurel, and hit is, is sangluler.

    We are all very aware of the sometimes misspellings in ‘Fesser T’s articles, but I think he might do those on porpoise to add sum whit er, wit. But then some genuous likin’ yourn kind gotta appear educated and complain. You aint tha first fool to do so Sport.

    Subject:Verb agreement. You have a cottin’ pickin’ compound sentence so It’s must agree with things and it “don’t”.

  5. I don’t own guns. I don’t care to own guns. I did shoot a 22 rifle at a range when I was at camp one summer and was kind of good at it but the thought of shooting guns for target sport doesn’t do anything for me and i don’t need to hunt and kill animals for food.

    My question is this: Do guns come with warning labels? Boxes of bullets?
    I have a ladder in my garage that has about 10 warning labels.
    Children’s pajamas come with warning labels. Hairspray comes with warning labels. Household cleaning products come with warning labels. Does anyone here know whether guns come with warning labels?

    Are guns not made with the specific purpose to kill? bullets?
    I realize that unloaded guns are not inherently lethal, that one must load it, take aim and discharge the weapon in the general direction of another human for it to become an instrument of murder.

    I also get that any motor vehicle (Sally) could be used to kill either with specific intent or by accident but you need a license to operate a motor vehicle and the driver’s written exam in my state does mention that operating a motor vehicle while impaired is a crime and makes one more likely to do harm to others.

  6. Mr. Turley,

    I am a frequent reader of your site and have come to enjoy the set of stories you bring as well as the commentary.
    My only complaint is that there is always at least one spelling error in your post. It’s often simple things, such as in this post, “He later shot and filled Joseph Ileto, 39.”
    These are often errors a quick reread or spell check would solve. It would improve not only the professionalism of the site but also the reading experience.
    Thank you,

  7. Alex,

    With a torture lawyer on the 9th you just never know…

  8. Is it bad that I initially read the entry title so as to mean that the Ninth Court shot Victims Against Glock as their means of dismissing the lawsuit.

  9. It’s not the gun company’s fault that this situation happend. It’s the man who pulled the triggers fault!!

    The guy could have gotten a F350 and plowed into a crowd of people, killing several of them. He could have done that on a suspended license too! Does that make it Ford’s fault since they make a lot of trucks that don’t sell?

    Bottom line is, people are going to get what they want, whether it’s legal for them to have the item or not. Just like it’s illegal for a person under 21 to drink, doesn’t mean that a 19 yr kid isn’t going try to get a case of beer for themselves and their underaged buddies.

  10. LEO

    Sperry’s post to which you refer is an old, worn out, passe and thouroughly inaccurate, inappropriate and insulting jibe at liberals that has been around for many years without ever once being amusing in the slightest.

  11. Patrick Sperry,

    I liked the parody “Obamanomics explained” posted on your site. Was that somewhat original (realizing the we all stand on the brains, thoughts, and readings of others and complete originality—after millennia of humankind—is ‘kinda’ hard to claim…). However, I guess you at least rearranged the words ‘n thoughts. Good job, regardless.

  12. So then, a question? If ex post facto law is a moral position when applied to non felony Domestic Violence is that same position moral when applied in this situation?

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