Cinemark Demands Aurora Theater Shooting Victims Pay $700k in Legal Fees
Attorneys for the movie theater chain Cinemark recently filed a motion in a Colorado court seeking to recover nearly $700,000 in legal fees from the victims of the attack. The move has prompted considerable backlash on social media under the hashtag #BoycottCinemark.
The demand for attorneys’ fees stems from a lawsuit brought by victims of the shooting that alleged the theater failed to provide adequate security to prevent the attack. In May, a jury found Cinemark was not liable in the shooting that killed 12 people and injured more than 70.
According to Deadline.com, Cinemark filed the demand last week that seeks $699,187.12 in legal fees and other costs associated with the lawsuit brought by approximately 30 victims of the July 20, 2012 attack. Under Colorado law, the winning side in a civil lawsuit is allowed to seek legal fees and costs from its opponent. However, as the report notes, the move could simply be a tactic on the part of Cinemark to pressure the plaintiffs to drop any appeal of the action. Earlier this year, plaintiffs’ attorney Marc Bern said that he planned to file an appeal in the matter.
As news of the legal filing spread, so too did social media backlash under the hashtag #BoycottCinemark. Several of the comments were critical of the movie theater’s demand despite the recent announcement that it reported revenue of over $700 million in the last quarter.
Last week, a federal court in Colorado dismissed a separate lawsuit filed on behalf of several of the victims of the shooting. U.S. District Court Judge R. Brook Johnson wrote, “(James) Holmes’ premeditated and intentional actions were the predominant cause of plaintiffs’ losses,” and any failure of the theater to provide additional security was not “a substantial factor in causing this tragedy.”