Taurus Trigger Lawsuits Filed Over Unintentional Discharge

A Brazilian gun manufacturer faces two lawsuits from U.S. citizens, claiming that triggers on Taurus 9mm pistols are defective, including one claim involving the death of an 11-year-old boy. 

The gun trigger lawsuits comes just months after Taurus International reached a $30 million class action settlement over problems with nine models of Taurus 9mm pistols.

One of the lawsuits was filed by Donald Simms, of Alabama in a Florida court on October 30. The other was filed the same day by Jason Friend, of Kentucky.

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According to Simms’ lawsuit, he owned the gun less than a year when, on February 15, he was trying to insert a magazine into a Taurus PT 609 9mm. The magazine did not go in properly, so he slapped it with the bottom of his hand. The lawsuit indicates that this caused the slide to spring shut, and the gun went off when bumped a second time. Simms claims he never touched the trigger.

The bullet went through Simm’s hand, through his wife’s arm, and hit his son in the neck. The 11-year old boy died from his injuries.

A similar complaint filed by Friend alleges that his Taurus 24/7 Pro DS went off when it fell out of his holster and hit the ground in February 2014. Friend, a police officer, was shot in the leg. According to the lawsuit, the bullet caused serious nerve, bone and tissue damage. He had owned the gun for more than five years.

In July, Taurus agreed to settle a class action lawsuit that claimed that nine of the company’s pistol designs had defective triggers, which could result in the handguns firing while the safety was engaged. That lawsuit was brought by an Iowa sheriff’s deputy, whose gun went off when he dropped it while chasing a suspect in 2013. There were no injuries in that incident.

The same year, the Sao Paolo Brazil Military Police recalled 98,000 Taurus 24/7 pistols from officers after reports that the pistols were going off without anyone pulling the trigger. The settlement agreement allows anyone who owns one of the affected pistols to return them to the company for payments of up to $200.

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