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Victims of crimes sued gun manufacturers, ultimately without much success.
Then, in 1998, the city of New Orleans filed a lawsuit against gun manufacturers seeking to recover some of the social costs of gun violence.
One year ago, Smith & Wesson was a company in deep trouble, its sales slumping and customers feeling betrayed by its gun safety and distribution deal with the government.In exchange for agreeing to a strict code of conduct for itself and its dealers, Smith & Wesson would be released from most of the lawsuits. Patrick's Day, was immediately denounced by gun enthusiasts who considered Smith & Wesson to be giving up constitutional rights to bear arms.A consumer backlash began that affected Smith & Wesson sales immediately. The "Gun Tests" that I got today had this piece of news: "Consent Degree Dissolved.On April 8, following the city's decision to drop its lawsuit against other members of the firearms industry, Boston and the Boston Public Health Commission agreed to dissolve the Consent Degree signed on March 1, 2001, with Smith & Wesson." Maybe I've missed it, but I don't remember ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN or even the local Cedar Rapids, Iowa Gazette giving this the usual headline, front page treatment.
The gun business was booming in the early 1990s, but a series of events was soon to shake the business.