A confidential settlement has been reached in a case involving Knight Rifles. The settlement came during jury deliberations following a two-week trial. Following the announcement of the settlement, a discussion was held with 11 of the 14 jurors for approximately 3.5 hours. The jurors disclosed that they were prepared to award compensatory damages to the Plaintiff in the amount of $3,292,891.26. They had not yet determined the exact amount for the consortium claim. The jurors indicated that they would have returned a total verdict for over $4 million.
This case involved a discharge of a Knight muzzleloader that didn’t have a trigger pull. Ken Jain, the Plaintiff, while hunting, attempted to put a cushion into his jacket. Prior to setting the butt of the rifle on the ground, he checked to see if the primary safety was working by raising the gun to his shoulder and giving the trigger a light “tap.” He then proceeded to give the trigger a firm pull. The gun did not discharge. He then lowered the gun to the ground to place the cushion in his jacket. While his left forearm was momentarily passing over the barrel of the muzzleloader, the gun spontaneously discharged, without the trigger being pulled. Mr. Jain suffered extensive damage to his left forearm. The case was tried for over two weeks in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.
The manufacturer of the trigger assembly has manufactured over 500,000 similar trigger assemblies. Of note, during the course of this litigation, the manufacturer continued and continues to make thousands of these trigger assemblies with defective safeties. Plaintiffs were represented by Thomas K. Guelzow, a lawyer with the Guelzow Law Offices, in Eau Claire, Wis. He did a very good job in this most interesting case.
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