Attendee Files Lawsuit Against EA After Madden Shooting | Gaming News
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The Madden NFL 19 Jacksonville shooting earlier this week has left many wondering if something could have been done to avoid these events from unfolding. Now, a lawsuit is being filed by one of the survivors against EA, claiming that the game developer didn’t do enough to prevent this atrocity.
The lawsuit was filed by gamer and tournament participant Jacob Mitich, who was injured by a gunshot to the leg when gunman Katz opened fire at the event. The suit alleges that the Madden tournament venue, GLHF Esports Bar, lacked sufficient security on-par with other gaming tournaments, and that EA didn’t do enough to ensure that the venue would be safe prior to the tournament occurring. The lawsuit is seeking unspecified damages from EA, Jacksonville Landing Investments, Sleiman Enterprises, Chicago Pizza, the GLHF Esports Bar, and others.
It remains unclear if the suit can succeed, but it does highlight some of the problems that have come to light with the venue since the shooting. Sleiman Enterprises, who leases the property where GLHF Game Bar operates has previously had run-ins with the city of Jacksonville, which owns the property. After Jacksonville attempted to terminate the lease, Sleiman Enterprises fired back, claiming that inadequate security and maintenance was provided to the property.
It remains to be seen if a jury will find that EA has any liability in the case. The Madden developer previously tweeted that although the qualifiers aren’t run directly by it, but rather by independent tournament partners, it would be working with all future venues to ensure that a safe and reliable space was provided for the participants and the audience. The company also extended its sympathies to the survivors and announced the Jacksonville Tribute, which will provide $1 million to the victims and their families. It’s also establishing a fund to allow others to provide donations to the victims as well.
It may be quite some time before this lawsuit fully plays out. While the suit is seeking a jury trial, it may ultimately be settled out of court. In the meantime, it’s likely to spur even more improvements to security at gaming events like these around the globe so that this sort of thing doesn’t happen again at Madden qualifiers or any other tournaments.