Officer At Gorge Shooting Part Of Lawsuit Against New Gun Law
The Moses Lake Police officer credited with bringing down the suspect in last weekend's Gorge Amphitheater shooting is also a plaintiff in a lawsuit challenging Washington's new assault weapons ban (HB1240).
Officer Edgar Salazar is one if seven residents in a suit being heard Friday who are seeking to have the assault weapons ban struck down.
Salazar is on paid administrative leave while an investigation into the officer involved shooting is performed.
He shot and injured James Kelly, who is accused of killing two people and injuring three others during a concert festival last Saturday at the Gorge.
Salazar is being represent in the lawsuit by the Silent Majority Foundation.
The Foundation is leading the suit which also includes gun stores Guardian Arms and Millard Sales. The six other residents who are suing in addition to Salazar are Michael McKee, Paul Hill, Ted Hile, Brina Yearout, Nathan Poplawski, and Jaxon Holman.
The suit was filed in Grant County, but a change in venue means the Friday hearing will take place in Thurston County.
There are two other lawsuits challenging the assault weapons ban, which was passed by the state legislature this year.
One was filed by the National Rifle Association while the other is fronted by Bellevue-based Second Amendment Foundation.
The Second Amendment Foundation filed its case in federal court in Tacoma.
A judge in that court reject a request earlier this month by the Foundation to grant a preliminary injunction blocking implementation of the assault weapons ban.
Attorney General Bob Ferguson took part in helping craft and promote the legislation creation the ban.
He commented that the potential for lawsuits was top of mind while drafting the bill.
The ban itself prohibits the sale, manufacture, and import of assault weapons in Washington state while allowing exemptions for law enforcement and the military. It also does not impact gun owners who currently possess assault weapons.