© 2024 Lakeshore Public Media
8625 Indiana Place
Merrillville, IN 46410
Public Broadcasting for Northwest Indiana & Chicagoland since 1987
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Holcomb signs bill that torpedoes Gary lawsuit against gun makers, sellers

Eric Holcomb squints during a press conference while listening to a question. Holcomb is a White man with white and gray hair and beard, wearing glasses and a gray pullover over a colored shirt.
Lauren Chapman
IPB News
Gov. Eric Holcomb signed into law a bill that bans local governments from suing anyone in the gun industry, with limited exceptions, even if they do something illegal.

A lawsuit by the city of Gary against gun makers and sellers is likely over after Gov. Eric Holcomb signed a bill into law Friday torpedoing the suit.

The legislation bans any community in the state from suing the gun industry ever again, even if they do something illegal, with very limited exceptions.

Critics of HEA 1235 said lawmakers interfering in an ongoing lawsuit should be out-of-bounds. But Holcomb said he doesn’t have a problem with it.

"It wouldn’t be the first time, so it’s not unprecedented," Holcomb said. "This is where issues and policies that affect the state as a whole are appropriately debated."

READ MORE: Bill sent to governor trying to torpedo Gary lawsuit against gun makers, sellers

Join the conversation and sign up for the Indiana Two-Way. Text "Indiana" to 765-275-1120. Your comments and questions in response to our weekly text help us find the answers you need on statewide issues, including our project Civically, Indiana and our 2024 legislative bill tracker.

Republicans backing the bill said the attorney general should have the sole responsibility to bring government suits against the gun industry.

Gary’s lawsuit has been going on for 25 years, in part because Indiana lawmakers have tried to end it before.

Brandon is our Statehouse bureau chief. Contact him at bsmith@ipbs.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

Brandon Smith has covered the Statehouse for Indiana Public Broadcasting for more than a decade, spanning three governors and a dozen legislative sessions. He's also the host of Indiana Week in Review, a weekly political and policy discussion program seen and heard across the state. He previously worked at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri and WSPY in Plano, Illinois. His first job in radio was in another state capitol - Jefferson City, Missouri - as a reporter for three stations around the Show-Me State.