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One Year Since the Mass Shooting at Old National Bank in Louisville, KY; Moms Demand Action, Students Demand Action Statements 

April 9, 2024

LOUISVILLE, KY – The Kentucky chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots network, released the following statements ahead of the one-year mark, tomorrow, of the mass shooting at Old National Bank in downtown Louisville where five people were killed and eight were injured. 

“One year ago, five members of our community were senselessly shot and killed and countless lives impacted – all because someone had access to a gun who should not have,” said Kristal Smith, a volunteer with the Kentucky chapter of Moms Demand Action. “The grief and trauma of experiencing a shooting never goes away and we cannot bring the lives lost one year ago back, but we can honor them by continuing to fight for stronger gun safety laws so that not one more community has to be devastated by this tragedy again. A safer future is possible.” 

“Our hearts go out to the families of those taken by last year’s senseless tragedy and the entire Louisville community that’s been impacted since,” said Emma Vonder Haar, a volunteer leader with Students Demand Action from Louisville. “America is stuck in an endless cycle: Shootings strike, communities are left devastated, lawmakers fail to act, and then we repeat. We deserve better than that. My generation is committed to solving this crisis and we won’t stop until tragedies like what we witnessed a year ago, and every day since, are a thing of the past.”   

In the year since the mass shooting at Old National Bank, Kentucky lawmakers have not taken any steps to strengthen the state’s gun violence prevention laws. Instead, lawmakers this session passed a bill (SB 2) to put more guns in K-12 schools through volunteer or paid armed ‘guardian’ positions for veterans or retired law enforcement. 

Research demonstrates that in states where elected officials have taken action to pass gun safety laws, fewer people die by gun violence. In contrast, Kentucky has the 14th-highest rate of gun deaths in the U.S. Last year, lawmakers passed a dangerous nullification bill which seeks to undermine federal firearm laws, making it illegal for any public officer or employee of the state, including state and local law enforcement officers, to assist with the enforcement of new federal gun laws or regulations that would help keep Kentucky safe. 

Survivors and loved ones of those killed in Old Bank National mass shooting, represented by Everytown Law, Romanucci & Blandin, LLC, and Thomas Law Offices, filed a civil lawsuit this January against River City Firearms Inc., the gun store that sold the weapon to the now-deceased shooter. 

The lawsuit alleges that this act of widespread devastation and loss of life was made possible because River City Firearms ignored obvious warning signs when the shooter entered its store to purchase an assault weapon just one week before the shooting. Further, the complaint alleges that River City upsold the shooter, choosing profits over safety by selling him additional tactical equipment, including three 30-round magazines, a red-dot sight to increase the accuracy of his aim, and a vertical grip for greater control over the weapon. Read the full complaint here.

In an average year, 823 people die by guns in Kentucky and another 1,531 are wounded. Gun violence costs Kentucky $9.6 billion each year, of which $183.4 million is paid by taxpayers. More information on gun violence in Kentucky is available here.

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