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Some of the families who lost their loved ones in the Newtown, Conn. Sandy Hook Massacre have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the makers of the military rifle Adam Lanza used in the tragic shooting.

Nine families, including a teacher who survived the massacre, filed the suit on Monday in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Bushmaster International, firearms distributor Camfour, and gun shop Riverview Gun Sales were named in the lawsuit for selling the AR-15 to the masses. The families believe the company should have viewed the rifle as “an unreasonable and egregious risk of physical injury to others.”

“It’s important for my family to honor my sister and not have her name just be the teacher that shielding her kids,” said Jillian Soto, sister of victim Vicki Soto. “I want people to remember that her family fought in court for her name and to make change happen to hold the gun industry responsible.”

The parents are seeking $15,000 in damages, including coverage of monetary damages, punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees. Estates were created for the children who died, meaning the parents can sue on behalf of the victims. Jillian Soto says she hopes the lawsuit will bring awareness to the dangers of guns and ultimately will wipe AR-15s off the shelves.

“No matter what the outcome is, at least we gave it a shot,” she said. “If we don’t win, we won’t regret what we have done in our sister’s honor.”

Over 75 school shootings have been reported since Lanza opened fire at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, killing 20 children, six faculty members, his mother, and himself in 2012. Lanza’s mother purchased the Bushmaster gun at Riverview Gun Sales, a now-closed gun shop, in 2010.

Newtown First Selectman Pat Llodra and school Superintendent Joseph Erardi penned a letter to the public on the second anniversary of the shooting last week. The town didn’t hold public services. Instead, they chose to reflect on the victims peacefully and privately. You can read their letter here.


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