Federal Judge to Preside Over Armslist Challenge

     MILWAUKEE (CN) – The gun broker and seller tied to the 2012 shooting rampage in a Wisconsin spa must face wrongful-death claims before a federal judge, court records show.
     Though nothing in the Milwaukee County Circuit Court records indicates who requested Friday’s removal to federal court, a state jury held the key to victory just last month for the case against a different gun broker by the same plaintiff attorney.
     The new case involves the mass shooting orchestrated by Radcliffe Haughton on Oct. 21, 2012, at the Azana Spa and Salon.
     Haughton killed three spa workers, including his hairstylist wife, Zina Daniel Haughton, injured four others, then shot himself in the head.
     Three years to the day of the carnage, Zina’s daughter Yasmeen Daniel filed suit against Armslist, a website that brokered Haughton’s acquisition of an FNP-40 semiautomatic handgun.
     Daniel was at the spa on the day of the shooting, claiming that she survived only because another woman blocked her and took the fatal bullet Haughton aimed at her. She notes that her mother had taken a restraining order out against the abusive Haughton in the days before the Brookfield shooting.
     With Zina testifying about her husband’s threats, saying they “terrorize my every waking moment,” Daniel says “the court also prohibited Radcliffe Haughton from possessing a firearm until October 18, 2016, finding ‘clear and convincing evidence’ that he might use a firearm to harm Zina Daniel Haughton and endanger public safety.”
     Haughton avoided official notice, however, by buying a handgun through Armslist.com, described by its founder Jonathan Gibbon as “a gun show that never ends,” apparently referring to a controversial loophole in gun-control law that does not require background checks on purchases made at gun shows, the 53-page complaint states.
     A day before he killed his wife, Haughton gave Devin Linn $500 cash in a McDonald’s parking lot for an FNP-40 and three high-capacity magazines, paying a premium price for the anonymity and the instant availability that Armslist brokered.
     A week before filing the suit for Daniel, Cannon & Dunphy attorney Patrick Dunphy secured a jury verdict against Badger Guns with regard to straw-bought firearms that were used to shoot police officers.
     Dunphy did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment on Daniel’s case.
     The federal civil cover sheet is signed by Joshua Maggard of Quarles & Brady, who is listed as lead counsel for all the named defendants, save Linn and Haughton’s estate.
     Maggard did not immediately respond to an email requesting comment.

Editor’s Note: After this story ran Monday, Patrick Dunphy, an attorney for plaintiff Yasmeen Daniel, said in an email that Armslist removed the case from state court. Dunphy added that his team will move to remand.

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