Lawyers For Victims Of Las Vegas Shooting Reach Settlement With MGM Resorts

Oct 3, 2019
Originally published on October 3, 2019 4:58 pm
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MGM Resorts has agreed to pay up to $800 million to resolve thousands of liability claims over the mass shooting in Las Vegas. The massacre killed 58 people and wounded hundreds of others. NPR's Leila Fadel reports the announcement comes the week of the second anniversary of the largest mass shooting in modern American history.

LEILA FADEL, BYLINE: Robert Eglet is the lead attorney negotiating on behalf of the victims. At a press conference, he called the impending settlement a shining example of how corporations should act following a horrific event like the shooting on the Las Vegas Strip.

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ROBERT EGLET: What MGM has done here through this process and through this mediation represents the highest standard of corporate citizenship I have ever seen in my career.

FADEL: But Eglet says the settlement is not an admission of liability by MGM Resorts, which owns Mandalay Bay. Dozens of law firms worked together on the case. Two years ago, the shooter stockpiled an arsenal of firearms in a suite on the 32nd floor of the hotel and then opened fire on some 22,000 people at a country music festival below.

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EGLET: While nothing will bring - be able to bring back the lives lost or undo the horror so many suffered on that day, this settlement will provide fair compensation for thousands of victims and their families.

FADEL: Eglet was a loud critic of MGM last year when it countersued victims. It cited a federal law passed after Sept. 11 that says that companies that take certain safety measures aren't liable if those measures fail to prevent an attack. But during the eight-month mediation process, Engelhardt says MGM showed good intentions. The settlement, he says, will resolve all the complaints. Eglet says he hopes the settlement leads to change that could stop gun violence and hold gun manufacturers accountable.

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EGLET: I hope this inspires our leaders in Washington to do something about this. Every single day now, literally every single day in America, there is a mass shooting of some kind.

FADEL: The chairman and CEO of MGM, Jim Murren, said in a statement - we have always believed that prolonged litigation around these matters is in no one's best interests. He went on to say it's the company's sincere hope that the agreement means that scenario will be avoided. The settlement will range from $735 million to 800 million, depending on how many victims choose to participate. All or most of that will be covered by MGM's insurance.

Leila Fadel, NPR News. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.