Update: Attorney General George Jepsen badmouths the possibility of a lawsuit, as Pinsky withdraws it — at least for time being.
Update: Pinsky tells the New Haven Independent’s Paul Bass that he has received about 50 death threats.
Update: A clarifying piece by attorney Ryan McKeen on the mechanics of a potential Sandy Hook lawsuit.
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I suppose we should have expected it. We do, after all, live in a country in which lawsuits to settle disputes have become a way of life, even in cases where no living person is really to blame.
A lawyer representing a surviving child in the Newtown massacre has served notice that he intends to sue for damages on behalf of his client, who he claims “has sustained emotional and psychological trauma and injury, the nature and extent of which are yet to be determined.”
Thee is so much wrong here that it’s difficult to know where to begin in discussing it. Note that attorney Irving Pinsky wants to sue the state for failing to protect the student “from foreseeable harm,” not the town of Newtown, which is actually charged with protecting the six-year-old child during the school day when the attack took place. Is that because the state has deeper pockets? Or is he going after the state because it would look bad to fleece local taxpayers after they suffered the worst mass shooting of school children in U.S. history?
What steps could the state or the town, which the complaint says the state should have done a better job of supervising, have reasonably taken to prevent this tragedy? Adam Lanza shot his way through an entrance to the school. Heroic teachers and administrators gave their lives trying save students from harm.
Pinsky says he wants the identity of his young client to remain hidden because “she’s suffered enough.” Fair enough, but if this case goes to trial, the identity of the child’s parents should be made public. As Pinsky acknowledged, this is surely the first of several lawsuits, but I never thought an uninjured student would seek damages.
This just looks terrible for everyone, but especially the parents of the child who approached Pinsky only a week after the tragedy. And their child was fortunate enough to survive. The attorney and his clients look very small indeed.
I think I smell a column. Then again, maybe I need to move on from Newtown. It’s simply too maddening.