In the wrong hands, guns can cause horrific damage. While society tries to limit access to guns, based on age, criminal record or mental illness, all too often guns end up in the wrong hands due to the irresponsible actions of gun owners. Guns are not locked or are accessible to people who cannot be trusted to use the gun appropriately or appreciate the danger of the weapon. Legitimate gun owners can over react to perceived threats and shoot innocent persons. Weapons accidentally discharge.
As shooting victims attorneys, we have represented clients whose loved ones have been both accidentally and intentionally shot. In one case, one neighbor mistook the son of another neighbor for a burglar and shot him. The boy was told by the son of the shooter to knock softly on the door so as to not wake up the father. In another case, the surviving family alleged that their loved one was shot and killed by the son of parents that had failed to safely secure their gun, even though they knew their son was unstable and had a criminal record.
Arizona, like most states, has a victim compensation fund to provide limited financial assistance. A civil case can be filed against the perpetrator or any negligent third party in order to more fully compensate a family for lost wages, medical expenses, funeral expenses, and emotional damages suffered by the loss of a loved one. Although a civil suit will never fully enable a family to recover from the loss, it can be a powerful tool to assist a family who depended on the loved one for financial support and to hold negligent parties accountable for their actions.
If you or someone you know has been affected or victimized by a shooting or gun violence, please contact the shooting victims attorneys at The Law Office of Sara J. Powell. We seek justice for victims through compensation and rights advocacy.