Manatt Files Cert Petition Seeking Review of Wisconsin Supreme Court Ruling in Armslist Case

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– The National Law Journal’s Supreme Court Brief

The National Law Journal’s Supreme Court Brief highlighted a Manatt pro bono team’s lead, alongside the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, in a Supreme Court cert petition that seeks review of the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s ruling that the Communications Decency Act (CDA) immunized the owners and operators of Armslist.com, an online firearms marketplace, from claims resulting from a firearm purchased via the website. The publication mentioned Manatt’s Jacqueline Wolff, a partner in the firm’s investigations and white collar defense practice; Samantha Katze, counsel in the firm’s litigation practice; and Molly Wyler, an associate in the firm’s investigations and white collar defense practice.

In April, the Wisconsin Supreme Court reversed the Wisconsin Court of Appeals and ruled that the CDA barred Yasmeen Daniel’s claims against the owners and operators of Armslist.com arising out of the October 2012 mass shooting at the Azana Spa in Wisconsin. The shooting resulted in the death of Daniel’s mother, Zina Daniel Haughton. The shooter was Haughton’s husband, who had been the subject of a domestic restraining order that prohibited him from purchasing a firearm. Daniel seeks to impose liability on the owners and operators of Armslist.com for negligently and intentionally designing and operating their website to facilitate the purchase of firearms by prohibited purchasers, including the shooter in this case, and thereby causing her mother’s death.  

The team’s petition asks the Supreme Court to review the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s decision in light of the split among state courts of last resort and federal circuit courts as to whether and to what extent the CDA bars claims such as those asserted by Daniel.

Brady Center litigation director Jonathan Lowy said Manatt has been a significant supporter of the Brady Center for a number of years.

“They put a great team together with Jacqueline Wolff and Samantha Katze to work on the case,” he said.

Read the article here