A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by the families of three girls killed in a 1997 school shooting at Heath High School in Paducah, KY.
The lawsuit had accused several media companies of being responsible for the 1997 massacre, naming 25 defendants, including the makers of "The Basketball Diaries," a 1995 film that had been viewed by teen-age gunman Michael Carneal before the shootings.
Ruling that Carneals actions were unforeseeable and that product liability law did not apply to the ideas contained in movies and games, US District Court Judge Edward Johnstone dismissed the lawsuit on March 6, according to Reuters news service.
The families of victims Jessica James, Kayce Steger and Nicole Hadley said they would appeal the ruling.
Johnstone noted that the then-14-year-old Carneal recalled in his confession that he had been transfixed by a violent dream sequence in "The Basketball Diaries" in which the character played by Leonardo DiCaprio massacres classmates with a shotgun.
Carneals computer showed he looked extensively at violent and pornographic web sites, and was an avid player of violent computer and video games such as "Doom," "Quake" and "Mortal Kombat."
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