MGM Resorts International claimed it has no liability in any of the injuries or deaths in the Oct 1, mass shooting in Las Vegas
MGM Resorts International claimed in a new lawsuit that it has no liability in any of the injuries or deaths in the October 1, 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas.
Bodies strewn on the grass at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casinos after the unbridled carnage created by Stephen Paddock when he fired into the crowd in Las Vegas on night of Oct 1, 2017
MGM turned round and sued more than 1,000 victims of the shooting.
Although it owns the venue and organized the event the company argues that it cannot be held liable for Oct. 1 deaths, injuries or other damages, adding that any claims against MGM parties “must be dismissed,” according to complaints filed Friday in Nevada and California.
“Plaintiffs have no liability of any kind to defendants,” the complaints argue.
“I’ve never seen a more outrageous thing, where they sue the victims in an effort to find a judge they like,” attorney Robert Eglet, who represented some of the victims, told the Review-Journal, accusing MGM of “judge-shopping” in federal court, rather than state court where he believes any lawsuits should be filed.
“It’s just really sad that they would stoop to this level.”
Stephen Paddock shot and killed at least 58 and injured another 850 people attending a concert in Las Vegas
MGM Resorts International in the federal lawsuits against victims cites a 2002 federal act that extends liability protection to any company that uses “anti-terrorism” technology or services that can “help prevent and respond to mass violence.”
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The lawsuits argue that this protection also extends to MGM, since MGM hired the security company.
They do not seek money from the victims but do ask that a judge decide if the 2002 act is applicable, and if so, determine that future civil lawsuits against the company are not viable.
Debra DeShong, a spokeswoman for MGM Resorts, released a statement about the litigation Monday.
According to the statement, “The Federal Court is an appropriate venue for these cases and provides those affected with the opportunity for a timely resolution. Years of drawn out litigation and hearings are not in the best interest of victims, the community and those still healing.”
Related: Mass shooting at country music concert kills at least 58, 515 injured! Stephen Paddock, 64, with terrifying arsenal of weapons opens fire on packed Vegas music festival from 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay hotel
The FBI investigates the scene on the 32nd-floor of the Mandalay Bay. The shooter used the room as a launch pad while raining gunfire on concert goers 30 floors below on the Vegas strip on Oct. 1, 2017
Concert goers helping the injured escape Paddock’s killing rampage at Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Oct 1
Attendees flee the shooting range of Paddock unloaded round after round in Las Vegas on Sunday Oct 1, 2017
The shooter later identified as Stephen Paddock, 64, opened fire from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel into the crowd at the Route 91 Harvest music festival last year, killing 58 people and leaving more than 850 injured.
Robert Eglet said the grounds of the litigation are “obscure.”
MGM is a Nevada company, so any lawsuits belong in state court, Eglet said. He viewed the decision to file the complaints in federal court as a “blatant display of judge shopping” that “quite frankly verges on unethical.”
“I’ve never seen a more outrageous thing, where they sue the victims in an effort to find a judge they like,” he said. “It’s just really sad that they would stoop to this level.”
The act cited in the new lawsuits was passed just more than a year after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and intentionally included broad protections. For instance, the act defines terrorism as any unlawful act inside the United States that causes “mass destruction, injury or other loss.”
The FBI has not called the Las Vegas mass shooting an act of terrorism because the gunman had no clear motive, and the FBI defines terrorism as an act of terror associated with extremist ideologies of a political, religious, social, racial or environmental nature.A gunman opened fire from his Mandalay Bay suite, killing 58 concertgoers and injuring hundreds of others.