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NRA Settles Suit With Iowa Couple

December 7, 1999

PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ The National Rifle Association has agreed to pay an Iowa couple $450,000 to settle a lawsuit stemming from a scuffle at the group’s national convention in June 1998.

The settlement averts a retrial that was scheduled to begin Monday in federal court in Philadelphia.

Kenneth Brodbeck of Des Moines, Iowa, had sued the NRA and its president, actor Charlton Heston, for defamation and battery, saying he was roughed up by an NRA security guard during the convention. Brodbeck also said Heston accused him of ``very bad acting″ in an attempt to disrupt the NRA meeting.

Following a trial in which Heston took the witness stand, a jury in May awarded Brodbeck and his wife Sally a total of $4.45 million in damages. That verdict was thrown out by a federal judge in September, who called it excessive.

Brodbeck said he was trying to tape his wife’s remarks at a directors meeting when an NRA security man ordered him to stop taping, then assaulted him, causing him to fall.

But the NRA and Heston said Mrs. Brodbeck, an NRA board member, was part of an NRA faction opposed to the current leadership and that the fall was an attempt to disrupt the meeting. Mrs. Brodbeck was later defeated in her bid to keep her seat on the board.

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