On the fateful morning of April 16, 2007, Seung-Hui Cho, a student at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University entered Norris Hall, a building on the universityâ€™s main campus, and locked the doors from the outside, preventing students, professors, and law enforcement authorities from entering. Systematically, Cho went into one classroom after another and opened fire randomly on students and professors using two firearms he purchased locally. When he finished firing, he turned the gun on himself. In the end, Cho killed 30 students and teachers and seriously injured at least 17 others.
Within the next few years, family members and estates of the deceased students sued Choâ€™s family, the university, local psychologists and other third parties alleging wrongful death and failure to warn. In 2012, two families who filed lawsuits on behalf of the deceased students won their wrongful death lawsuits and will receive $8 million. As jurors listened to both sides argue their cases, they eventually decided in favor of the plaintiffs. Jurors decided that university officials should have and failed to warn its student about Choâ€™s erratic behavior. Attorneys for the Commonwealth of Virginia plan to seek a judicial reduction of the wrongful death award based on Virginiaâ€™s limited cap on wrongful death damages.
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