The Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) today applauded Palm beach County Circuit Judge Jorge Labarga for setting aside the outrageous $1.2 million verdict against the Valor Corporation for distributing the firearm used by 13-year-old Nathaniel Brazill to murder his teacher over two years ago.

“Judge Labarga has allowed common sense and the rule of law to prevail over emotion,” observed SAF founder Alan Gottlieb. “The Valor verdict defied logic by holding the Valor Corporation responsible for the willful act of a young thug. Nathaniel Brazill, who stole the pistol used to gun down Lake Worth Middle School teacher Barry Grunow, is solely responsible for that crime, and not the distributor.”

Grunow’s widow, Pamela, represented by lawyers from the anti-gun Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, had sued Valor, claiming that the distributor could have made the .25-caliber Raven semiautomatic pistol safer by installing some type of locking device. Because the jury ruled that the pistol was not defective, Judge Labarga ruled their monetary award to Grunow to be inconsistent with that finding.

“Once again, the Brady Center’s attempts to hold the firearms industry responsible for the vicious acts of criminals, regardless of their age, have been thwarted,” Gottlieb noted. “Valor distributed a product that was not defective. Installation of a trigger lock or some other device may or may not have prevented the young killer from using that particular gun, but it would likely not have stopped him from committing the murder.

“Brazill clearly demonstrated his intent,” Gottlieb continued, “by stealing the gun in the first place. He took the unloaded pistol and ammunition, deliberately loaded the gun and went to school. Claiming Valor was in any way responsible for that, financially or otherwise, is beyond logic, and we’re delighted that Judge Labarga understood that.”

Brazill was sentenced to 28 years in prison for shooting Grunow in a confrontation outside of the classroom.

“Nathanial Brazill, not Valor or anyone else, pulled the trigger and took Barry Grunow’s life,” Gottlieb stated. “Justice has been served twice, the first time by sending Brazill to prison, and now by setting aside a ridiculous and contradictory jury verdict.”

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