Question: The sons of a murder victim brought a wrongful death negligence
The sons of a murder victim brought a wrongful death/negligence action against a magazine, Soldier of Fortune, alleging that it had published an ad creating an unreasonable risk of violent crime. A former police officer had placed the ad offering his services as a bodyguard under the heading “Gun for Hire.” The ad resulted in the officer being hired to kill the plaintiffs’ father. The ad included the phrases “professional mercenary,” “very private,” and a statement indicating that “all jobs” would be considered, but it also included a list of legitimate jobs that involved the use of a gun. The plaintiffs won the negligence action and were awarded a $4.3 million judgment. Soldier of Fortune appealed on First Amendment grounds. Decide.
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