The Southern District of Ohio’s Eastern Division dismissed with prejudice a case brought by the Primus Group, an entertainment group, against rifle manufacturers Smith & Wesson, Remington Arms, SIG Sauer, Ruger, Colt, and ArmaLite.
The charges against the manufacturers included racketeering and intentional misrepresentation. The entertainment group claimed to have brought the suit “on behalf of all citizens, persons, and inhabitants of the United States of America who seek a Declaration of the existence of a “clear and present danger … because of the persistent killing and wounding of countless persons.”
Court documents said the entertainment group failed to make a specific claim (one that is not “conjectural or hypothetical”) and had no standing to bring the lawsuit. Regarding the entertainment group’s attempt to speak for all Americans, the court responded that the judicial system should not be “transformed into a ‘vehicle for the vindication of the value of interests of concerned bystanders.’” It emphasized that the appropriate domain for creating firearms policies is the legislature, not the courts.
Mark Oliva, NSSF director of public affairs, said that while the NSSF was not a party in the case, he is very glad to see it dismissed with prejudice: “Gun controllers want to try to cherry-pick the courts they think are going to be friendly to them. This dismissal makes it clear that the courtroom is not the place to decide public policy for firearms.”
The entertainment group also claimed to have been generally damaged in terms of sales and security expenses by the rifle manufacturers’ production of “assault weapons.” The court responded that the group is no more likely to suffer “imminent criminal firearms violence” than any other business or individual.
As for the “assault weapons,” Oliva told America’s 1st Freedom the firearms in question are actually semi-automatic rifles like AR-15s, which fire one bullet for each trigger pull like all firearms made for common civilian use. The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) estimates about 16 million of these rifles are in American households. “Americans own more AR-15s than Ford F-150s,” Oliva said.