Uvalde families sue Meta, video game creator and gunmaker

The families of the victims of the Uvalde school shooting are suing the manufacturer of the gun used in the attack, the video game producer and the parent company of Instagram Meta.
In two new lawsuits, they allege the companies helped promote dangerous weapons to a generation of “socially vulnerable” young men, including the 18-year-old shooter.
19 children and two teachers were killed in the attack at Robb Primary School.
Friday was the second anniversary of the Texas school shooting.
Two lawsuits filed in Texas and California target Activision, developer of the military video game series “Call of Duty.” Daniel Defense, a firearms manufacturer known for its high-end rifles; and Meta.
Companies are accused of responsibility for “educating” a generation of young people who live out violent video game fantasies in the real world with readily available weapons of war.
Shooter Salvador Ramos used an AR-15 rifle in the attack.
The lawsuits allege that Meta and Activision “knowingly exposed” him to the weapon he used in Uvalde and made him see it as the solution to his problems.
The lawsuits allege that Instagram, Activision and Daniel Defense were “partners … in a scheme that preys on unsuspecting teenage boys,” the lawyers said in a press release.
“There is a direct line between the actions of these companies and the Uvalde shooting,” the statement said.
“This three-headed monster deliberately exposed him to a weapon, made him see it as a tool to solve problems, and trained him to use it.”
According to lawsuits, the shooter was playing the military-based video game Call of Duty with a gun similar to the one used in the shooting when he was 15 years old.
The lawsuit says the shooter was “simultaneously” the target of “aggressive marketing” by Daniel Defense, which targeted the teenager with Instagram ads.
“Instagram creates a link between … a young person … and a gun and a gun company,” the plaintiffs’ lawyer Josh Koskoff told BBC US media partner CBS on Friday.
“And no one used Instagram to do that more than Daniel Defense.”
An Activision spokesperson told CBS that “the Uvalde shooting was horrific and heartbreaking in every way,” adding that the company extends its “deepest sympathies” to the victims and their families.
“Millions of people around the world enjoy playing video games without committing horrific acts,” the spokesperson said.
The BBC has contacted Meta, Daniel Defense and Activision for comment.
Daniel Defense, which has faced lawsuits filed by families of other victims, said in a 2022 statement that such lawsuits were “frivolous” and “politically motivated.”
On Wednesday the victims’ families reached a $2m (£1.5m) settlement with the city of Uvalde.
At the time of the attack, more than 370 officers from several local, state and federal departments were at Robb Elementary School.
It took the police more than an hour to stop the shooter, who was barricaded in adjacent classrooms.
Additionally, the families said they are seeking new legal action against 92 state Department of Public Safety police officers for “shocking and widespread failures” during the shooting..

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