In a bid to avoid liability claims, MGM Resorts has filed pre-emptive federal lawsuits against more than 1,000 victims of the Route 91 Harvest attack
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The festival's venue and promoter, as well as the maker of the bump-stock device used by Stephen Paddock, have been named in one of the first post-attack lawsuits
By Jon Chapple on 13 Oct 2017
Those affected by last week’s mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest festival in Las Vegas have begun seeking legal redress, with at least three separate lawsuits so far filed in US courts.
The most prominent individual suit – filed on behalf of Paige Gaisper, a 21-year-old Californian student who was shot in the underarm during the attack, which left more than 59 dead – names Live Nation, the promoter of the event; MGM Resorts, which owns the Mandalay Bay resort from where the shooter fired on concertgoers; and Slide Fire Solutions, which manufactured the ‘bump stock’ device that allowed him to achieve simulated automatic fire from semi-auto weapons.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Gasper’s complaint accuses MGM Resorts of “breach[ing] their duty of reasonable care” by failing to stop the gunman, Stephen Paddock, from bringing a cache of weapons into the hotel. She also alleges the company’s employees failed to respond quickly enough to the threat posed by Paddock, something MGM denies.
Live Nation, meanwhile, allegedly failed to “design, build and mark adequate exits in case of emergency” and “properly train and supervise employees in an appropriate plan of action in case of an emergency”.
Paige Gaisper, who was shot in the underarm, is suing MGM Resorts, Live Nation and bump-stock manufacturer Slide Fire
A second lawsuit – filed, like Gasper’s, in Clark County district court in Nevada – on behalf of all festivalgoers by gun-control group Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence also takes aim at Slide Fire.
A third complaint, brought by the family of John Phippen, who died in the attack, petitions a judge to appoint a special administrator to take over Paddock’s estate.
Several enterprising law firms, meanwhile – as was the case after Fyre Festival – have begun actively soliciting new lawsuits by taking out sponsored ads on Google, with one, California’s Oaks Law Firm, registering the domain vegaslawsuit.com:
YouTube agreed earlier this week to remove videos showing how to attack bump stocks, which work by using recoil to simulate fully automatic fire, to guns. “We have long had a policy against harmful and dangerous content,” said a spokesperson in a statement. “In the wake of the recent tragedy in Las Vegas, we have taken a closer look at videos that demonstrate how to convert firearms to make them fire more quickly and we’ve expanded our existing policy to prohibit these videos.”
Several artists, including Jennifer Lopez and Jason Aldean, cancelled planned shows in Vegas in the aftermath of the attack. Others, such as Celine Dion, Billy Idol and John Fogerty, opted instead to play as normal, with Fogerty saying live music has a “way of healing, and that is what we will do: come together and heal. We can’t let fear control our lives.”
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