Ryan Ryan Deluca Obtains Summary Judgment on Behalf of Town of Newtown in Sandy Hook Lawsuit

May 17, 2018

In a decision released May 7, 2018, New Haven Superior Court Judge Robin Lynn Wilson granted the Motion for Summary Judgment briefed and argued by Ryan Ryan Deluca LLP partners Charles “Chuck” Deluca and John W. Cannavino Jr. and associate Thomas S. Lambert, together with co-counsel Monte Frank, in a lawsuit stemming from the Sandy Hook tragedy of December 14, 2012. The decision in favor of Ryan Ryan Deluca’s clients, the Town of Newtown and its Board of Education, came in the matter of Scarlett Lewis, Administratrix of the Estate of Jesse Lewis, et al. v. Town of Newtown et al.

The estates of two of the victims of Lanza’s attack brought a lawsuit against the Town of Newtown and its Board of Education for allegedly failing to prevent the attack by the shooter on those within the school, including students, teachers, staff, and administrators.

In her 29-page decision, Judge Wilson agreed, finding that, “[i]n the present case, faculty and staff had to make split-second decisions in the face of an armed gunman and subjecting their decisions to scrutiny, aided by hindsight, would no less serve the public interest than subjecting a police officer’s discretionary decisions to second guessing.” “Emergencies, by their very nature, are sudden and often rapidly evolving events, and a response can never be 100 percent scripted and directed,” she wrote. "In an emergency situation, whereby those deemed to react in a discretionary manner are themselves under attack, no reasonable jury could find that anything would have been apparent to these individuals, under such explosive and rapidly evolving circumstances, as a matter of law."

Plaintiffs’ counsel has indicated that they intend to appeal the decision.