Cinemark Theaters has announced that it will no longer be seeking $700,000 in legal fees from the survivors of a 2012 theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado. The announcement comes after a protracted legal battle between the chain and survivors of the attack, who launched a class action suit against the company on the grounds that it had acted insufficiently to prevent James Holmes from killing 12 people (and wounding dozens more) at a July 20, 2012 screening of The Dark Knight Rises.
A Colorado jury ruled against the survivors earlier this year, which led Cinemark to exercise its right to seek recompense for $700,000 in legal fees spent on the case. Now, the company has dropped that request, either because the public relations quagmire of demanding money from mass shooting victims became too much of a black mark on the company’s record, or because the plaintiffs agreed to waive any future appeals, thus satisfying the company’s need to put the entire case behind them once and for all. According to the company’s attorneys, “Defendants’ goal has always been to resolve this matter fully and completely without an award of costs of any kind to any party.”(Meanwhile, two survivors who were paralyzed in the attacks, and who were part of a federal suit against the company—as opposed to the Colorado state case being discussed here—are continuing to wait for an appeal.)