I-Team: Attorneys for victims suing bump stock company speak

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Before the deadly shooting on the Las Vegas Strip, many people hadn’t heard of bump stocks, which allow semi-automatic weapons to fire ammunition more rapidly, similar to the rate of automatic weapons.

Investigators say the gunman 64-year-old Stephen Paddock modified his rifles with the gun accessory, causing it to play a major part in the shooting massacre.

The 8 News NOW I-Team first reported Saturday how survivors were suing the main company behind bump stocks.

On Tuesday, I-Team Reporter Vanessa Murphy spoke with their attornies.

Currently, three survivors of the shooting massacre are plaintiffs named in the lawsuit, but the case could potentially affect the nearly 22,000 who were at the concert.” 

“I had people I know were shot,” said Robert Eglet, attorney.  “We know, my partners and I knew people who were killed.”

Eglet, along with Jonathan Lowy of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence are behind the lawsuit against Slide Fire Solutions, the maker, and seller of bump stocks.

On Oct. 1, 58 people were killed, and nearly 500 others were injured at the country music festival after Paddock opened fire from the 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino.

Investigators say with a combination of semi-automatic weapons with bump stocks Paddock fired more than a thousand bullets in 11 minutes across Las Vegas Boulevard.

“That couldn’t have happened in that short period of time without these bump stocks that turned these semi-automatic weapons into mass killing machines,” said Eglet. 

The class-action lawsuit alleges Slide Fire said it was intended to assist “persons whose hands have limited mobility” in order to sell bump stocks under federal law, but the inventor also said it was geared toward “people like me, who love fully auto.”

As of Saturday, Slide Fire’s website said they were no longer taking orders for bump stocks. The I-Team reached out for a comment but did not receive a response.

The claims in the lawsuit are negligence, emotional distress, and more.  

Vanessa Murphy, I-Team Reporter: “What do you hope to accomplish with this lawsuit?”
Jonathan Lowy, attorney: “At least two things: One is to compensate the victims and make sure that they have the medical diagnosis and treatment that they need but also to send a message to these companies and other companies that they have to act responsibly.”

Eglet says he’s also heard from families of victims who did not survive, so it’s likely he’ll file wrongful death lawsuits.  Slide Fire Solutions could be named as defendants in those as well. 

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