Judge berates Brady group in Lucky Gunner settlement

Daniel Terrill for reports:

“Those who ignite a fire should be responsible for the cost of suppressing it before it becomes a conflagration,” wrote Senior District Judge Richard P. Matsch about the Brady Campaign when he awarded $203,000 on June 17 to the retailers the organization sued. He was critical of the group for using the court to publicize its political agenda at the expense of a handful of retailers.

“The Brady Center may be pursuing a righteous cause, but the defendants should not have to bear the burden of defending themselves in this inappropriate forum,” Matsch wrote.

While filing lawsuits in the name of affecting public opinion is not unusual, Matsch suggested that Brady targeted the retailers to piggyback off of the high-profile incident and not because they were explicitly malicious or negligent.

“The injunctive relief requested is to stop all the defendants’ commercial activities until their business practices have been changed and approved by the court. There is nothing in the record to indicate that the plaintiffs or the Brady Center, the apparent sponsor of this case, made any attempt to persuade the defendants to make any alterations of those practices before bringing this highly publicized lawsuit,” Matsch wrote. “It would be highly unlikely that the defendants would seek to emasculate their businesses to conform to an undefined standard of care that would have prevented a purchaser of their products from using them in a barbaric assault on innocent people in an entertainment venue.”

Read the full story at