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'Doom' distributors seek dismissal of lawsuit

By The Associated Press

09.03.01

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DENVER — The distributors of the video game "Doom" have asked a federal court to dismiss a lawsuit that claims the product influenced the Columbine High School gunmen.

In documents filed Aug. 27, Midway Home Entertainment said the lawsuit filed on behalf of the family of slain teacher Dave Sanders and other Columbine victims is identical to one thrown out in Kentucky.

The class-action lawsuit seeks $5 billion in punitive damages from 25 entertainment companies.

In a separate filing, the Sanders' lawyer, John DeCamp, argued there is evidence that violent media lead to violent behavior and asked for a jury to hear the case. A hearing has not been set.

A federal judge in April 2000 dismissed a lawsuit filed against video-game makers after Michael Carneal killed three Heath High School students in Paducah, Ky., in 1997. The judge there said video games are not subject to product liability laws.

During the investigation into the 1999 Columbine shootings, police found a videotape that shows one of the killers with a sawed-off shotgun he calls "Arlene" after a character in "Doom."

Companies named in the lawsuit include Nintendo of America, Sega of America, Sony Computer Entertainment and Time Warner Inc., which is now AOL Time Warner, and the creators and publishers of "Doom" — ID Software Inc. and Infogames, formerly known as GT Interactive Software Corp.

Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold fatally shot Sanders and 12 students and wounded 23 others before killing themselves in the April 20, 1999, attack at Columbine High School.

Update

Columbine lawsuit against makers of video games, movies thrown out
Federal judge finds 'it is manifest that there is social utility in expressive and imaginative forms of entertainment, even if they contain violence.'  03.05.02

Previous

Violent video games are protected speech, companies say
Eight manufacturers ask for dismissal of federal lawsuit filed by families of Columbine victims.  07.19.01

Related

Federal judge dismisses lawsuit against movie, video game makers
Media producers could not foresee that Paducah, Ky., teen would go on shooting spree, court finds.  04.07.00

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