Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Northern Virginia gun shop sues legislators, citizens for various forms of disparagement

A new gun shop (NOVA Armory) in Arlington VA has sued numerous individuals for trying to disparage the business, with much of the activity occurring even before it even opened.

Among 64 defendants in the Virginia lawsuit are seven state legislators who allegedly appealed to the landlord not to rent to the business, an Arlington county board member and an Arlington school board member, and numerous residents.

Apparently some of the complaint involves social media disparagement. If so, this would not be the same scenario as many of the lawsuits brought against customers critical of businesses on review sites, as these individuals probably are not customers and would not have agreed to any non-disparagement. This may be more like a SLAPP suit, and Virginia does not have strong protections against SLAPP.

The Washington Post has a story by Patrician Sullivan here,

A store called NOVA Firearms has reportedly closed a location in Falls Church but has another one in McLean. The news story doesn’t say if this is the same business as NOVA Armory.

I don’t think that a gun shop that is operating lawfully creates a problem for a community.
Visitors could try the film “Bill’s Gun Shop” (2001), by Dean Hyers, filmed around Minneapolis, on Amazon. The film was a hit with the local Libertarian Party of Minnesota when I lived there. 

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