The parent company of the Mandalay Bay casino in Las Vegas sued more than 1,000 victims of the October 2017 mass shooting on hotel grounds to avoid liability for the incident, according to a report published Monday.
MGM Resorts International filed the lawsuit in federal courts in Nevada and California to argue that the shooting victims’ claims against the hotel should be “dismissed,” the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported on Monday.
“Plaintiffs have no liability of any kind to defendants,” the complaints stated.
Las Vegas lawyer Robert Eglet, an attorney representing some of the victims, told the Review-Journal that the hotel company’s action is an attempt to get the cases heard in federal court, where the company feels it has a better chance of winning than in state court.
Eglet added that he thinks MGM’s attempt at “judge shopping” is “unethical.”
“I’ve never seen a more outrageous thing, where they sue the victims in an effort to find a judge they like,” the lawyer continued. “It’s just really sad that they would stoop to this level.”
An MGM spokesperson released a statement Monday confirming their bid to move the lawsuits into federal court:
The Federal Court is an appropriate venue for these cases and provides those affected with the opportunity for a timely resolution. Years of drawn out litigation and hearings are not in the best interest of victims, the community and those still healing.
The shooter, Stephen Paddock, was a guest at the Mandalay Bay resort when he opened fire on concert-goers attending the Route 91 Harvest music festival on October 1. He killed 58 people and wounded more than 800 others before killing himself.
Las Vegas Sheriff Joe Lombardo confirmed in November 2017 that Paddock fired over 1,100 rounds of bullets on the concert-goers from his hotel room.