If a store sells ammunition to an underage person, who then shoots someone, is the retailer responsible?
Not necessarily, the Mississippi Supreme Court says. The court ruled 5-4 this week in favor of Wal-Mart in a lawsuit posing that question.
The lawsuit was filed by the relatives of Robert Williams, who was killed by his girlfriend's son in 2006. The son, Xavier Moore, was 20 at the time, and shot Williams with ammunition purchased at a Wal-Mart in Indianola. Moore later pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
Federal law requires that a person be 21 to buy pistol ammunition. The lawsuit claimed a Wal-Mart employee sold ammunition to Moore's 21-year-old friend, but knew Moore was the recipient.
The court ruled there's no proof Wal-Mart knew Moore was underage or would harm someone.