The family of 24-year-old Jessica Ghawi, a victim in the 2012 movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado, is faced with more than $200,000 in legal costs after a federal judge ordered them to pay attorney’s fees for four ammunition dealers the family attempted to sue.“They have taken our daughter, and now they want to take our worldly goods,” Lonnie Phillips told MSNBC’s Tamron Hall in a televised interview earlier this week. “I think that’s a little much.”
We have seen this already, but something in this particular news item caught the attention of Blog Reader Jay H: No mention of the Brady Campaign involvement in the lawsuit. Zip, nada.
Now jay being the forward fellow he is, contacted Sam Brock, one of the people involved in writing the story:
From: James Hafemeister [mailto:jayh@????.com]
Sent: Saturday, August 01, 2015 11:13 AM
To: Brock, Samuel (NBCUniversal)
Subject: PLCAA Story
I saw your story on the family who sued Lucky Gunner ammo sales. I was surprised that you made no mention of The Brady Campaign’s role in this lawsuit.
It seems, to me, that the Brady Center pressed this family to peruse this lawsuit and is now leaving them to pay the debt.
Did you not know about the Brady Center’s involvement? Or did you just choose to not report it?
Here’s their press release.
And here are screenshots in case they pull the press release down.
And Mr. Brock responded.
From: “Brock, Samuel (NBCUniversal)” <Samuel.Brock@nbcuni.com>
Date: August 3, 2015 at 12:24:03 CDT
To: James Hafemeister <jayh@????.com>
Subject: RE: PLCAA Story
Good morning Mr. Hafemeister,
Thank you for your thoughtful email regarding our story.
To answer your question, yes we were aware that the Brady Campaign funded the family’s efforts (and likely encouraged them) to challenge the Colorado gun laws.
We chose not to report it because the Brady Campaign wasn’t named as one of the plaintiffs, per the judge’s ruling to dismiss.
That said, I wish we had made mention of it in our story. I agree it is relevant to the overall discussion. We reached out to the Brady Center and specifically asked them *why they would provide legal counsel for the case, but not pick up the attorneys’ fees after the dismissal. They never responded to our request…and I think I should have outlined that lack of response in our piece.
Appreciate hearing Sent from my iPhone
Kudos to Mr. Brock for answering the email. I had a couple of experiences with journalists caught with a bad article and I am still waiting for a reply.
That being said, I am sorry but I am not buying the “They weren’t named” excuse. The point of the report is to make the Phillips look like they were run over first by the ammunition distributors and then by a judge with a heartless decision. Simply a televised Pity Party. In fact, a cursory Google search would have provided Mr. Brock with this result: A Linkedin profile of Mr. Phillips.
And last: We have seen plenty of corrections being made after a story originally was posted online, that is the beauty of the Interwebs. Yet this has not been done even after Jay’s email and admission by Mr. Brock that they screwed up.
Maybe is the location where Mr. Brock works: San Francisco/Bay area, home of our eternally beloved Dianne Feinstein who rates 100% with the Brady Campaign on Gun Control.
Or maybe I am just imagining things…..