The families of the victims in the Overland Park shooting are suing the stores that sold firearms to a straw purchaser that were later used to murder three innocent people in Kansas.
F. Glenn Miller Jr., a white supremacist convicted felon, recruited John Mark Reidle to purchase the guns he later used to shoot and kill William Corporon, Reat Underwood and Terri LaManno.
The Kansas City Star reported:
The family of William Corporon and his grandson, Reat Underwood, who were fatally shot outside the Jewish Community Center, filed suit Tuesday in Johnson County District Court.
In two identical suits on behalf of each victim, they allege that employees of a Wal-Mart store in Republic, Mo., were negligent when they sold a shotgun later used to kill Corporon and Reat.
“Gun dealers, including Wal-Mart, owe a duty to use the highest standard of care to prevent the supply of firearms to those prohibited from possessing them,” they said in their suits.
Miller, who was a previously convicted felon, could not legally buy or possess firearms.
According to the lawsuits, he enlisted another southern Missouri man, John Mark Reidle, to purchase the weapons.
A spokesman for Wal-Mart said that the company expresses condolences to the families who lost loved ones, but that because company officials have not seen the suits they cannot comment on them.
Also named as defendants are R.K. Shows Inc. of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and R.K. Shows, Mo., Inc., of Clayton, Mo.
According to the suit filed by the LaManno family, the gun sellers’ employees should have known that a straw buyer was purchasing the weapons for someone other than himself when he allegedly made the purchases on behalf of Miller.
Based on the remarks and behavior of Reidle and Miller, employees of Friendly Firearms and Wal-Mart “knew, had reason to know, or recklessly failed to know that Miller was not lawfully entitled to purchase or possess a firearm,” according to the suit.
“The Corporon family’s claims do not challenge law-abiding citizens’ Second Amendment rights to purchase guns or law-abiding retailers rights to sell guns,” said attorney David Morantz who is representing the family. “These lawsuits seek to hold retailers accountable for adhering to long-established laws designed to prevent guns from ending up in the hands of dangerous criminals and designed to prevent tragedies like the shootings of April 13, 2014.”
A private dedication was held at the Jewish Community Center in Overland Park on Tuesday to unveil a memorial in honor of Corporon, Underwood, and LaManno who were killed in the April 2014 attack.
A jury convicted Cross and sentenced him to death last year. Reidle plead guilty for his part and was placed on probation.
With the guilty parties already held accountable for their parts in the tragic shooting, victims’ families are now going after the people who sold them the tools that took their loved ones’ lives, but where does it end? At what point do we, as a society, say, “Enough.”?
This lawsuit has the potential to send us down a very slippery slope.