The Sandy Hook families will also be afforded the right to publicly release Remington documents they obtained during the lawsuit.
The families of nine Sandy Hook victims have settled their lawsuit against Remington Arms, the manufacturer of the semi-automatic rifle used in the shooting.
According to USA Today, the agreement comes several years after the families filed their initial complaint.
“When the Sandy Hook families came to see us, it was about nine years ago, and it was in the aftermath of shattering loss, and they were stunned, and they didn’t know what to do or where to go,” said Joshua Koskoff, lead attorney for the families. “But they … had the energy and drive and motivation to do one thing, and that was to do whatever they could so that other families … would not have to go through the kind of pain and loss that they had.”
Remington, says USA Today, is the maker of the Bushmaster AR-15-style rifle that Adam Lanza used to kill 20 first graders and six teachers at the elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut.
Nicole Hockley, whose son Dylan was among the children lost in the massacre, said the settlement is a groundbreaking “landmark, [a] historic victory.”
Hockley, adds USA Today, is also the co-founder and CEO of the Sandy Hook Promise Foundation, a nonprofit organization that seeks to prevent gun violence in the United States.
Speaking to reporters, Hockley said Remington’s choice to settle shows that the firearms industry shall finally be held accountable.
“The gun industry has been shielded from being held accountable for their part in these tragedies,” she said. “Today, that changes.”
While Remington will not pay Sandy Hook victims out of pocket, four of the company’s insurers will pay an estimated $73 million on its behalf.
As part of the settlement, Remington said that it will also allow the families to publicly release evidence they obtained during discovery—including documents that show how Remington marketed its Bushmaster rifle.
Joshua Koskoff, the lead attorney representing the families, said that his clients never set out to get money so much as answers.
“From the beginning, it was not about money,” Koskoff said. “It was about getting answers, learning about these decisions.”
“The linchpin of this settlement,” he said, “is that it allows these families the right to share information as to what they learned.”
FOX News notes that Remington had previously asked for the lawsuit to be dismissed, citing a federal law which broadly shields gunmakers from liability in the event a person uses their products for an illegal purpose. However, the Connecticut Supreme Court ruled that—in spite of these federal protections—state law affords Newtown families the right to sue Remington over how it marketed its guns.