A judge for the Eastern District of WA has dismissed a lawsuit against the State of WA and Senate Bill 5078, which would put gun makers and dealers potentially on the hook for certain crimes. Judge Mary Dimke dismissed the suit Friday, March 8th

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In the latest legislation aimed at the firearms industry in WA, Senate Bill 5078 passed along party lines in Olympia. It allows gun manufacturers and dealers potentially liable for crimes committed with their guns.

It applies similar requirements to the firearms industry as you might find with other products.  If someone is injured using, for example, a kitchen appliance and they sue for damages, this law could make gun manufacturers and dealers liable for the person who holds up a convenience store.

According to the final bill report:

"Firearm industry members are required to implement and enforce reasonable controls, such as screening, security, and inventory practices, to prevent specified harms. This includes requiring firearm industry members to take reasonable precautions to ensure they do not sell or distribute firearms and related products to straw purchasers and gun traffickers, or sell or distribute firearms and related products to a downstream distributor or retailer that fails to implement reasonable controls."

It goes on to say:

"Firearm industry members may not manufacture, distribute, import, market, or offer for wholesale or retail sale a firearm or related product that is designed, sold, or marketed in a manner that is targeted at minors or individuals who are legally prohibited from purchasing or possessing firearms, or that foreseeably promotes conversion of a legal firearm or related product into an illegal firearm or related product.

A violation of these duties is a public nuisance. A firearm industry member's conduct in violation of these duties constitutes a proximate cause of the public nuisance if the harm is a reasonably foreseeable effect of the conduct including criminal actions by third parties"

It leaves the door open for gun manufacturers and dealers to be held liable if a person commits a crime using a firearm.  The lawsuit was filed by the National Shooting Sports Foundation against the state.

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The NRA and other opponents of the bill, which passed last year, say it is a blatant attempt to bankrupt the firearms industry out of WA state.

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