Expert Witness & Consulting Group

 

The SAFER USA Consulting Group represents a broad range of common firearm industry expertise including:

  • Range lead mitigation
  • Firearm operation & handling
  • Shooting range operational safety
  • Gun store operation & firearm sales
  • Range & facility environmental issues
  • Range standard operating procedures
  • Range design, development & operation
  • Gunsmithing, firearm & accessory repair
  • Use of force & Illinois concealed carry law
  • Training program design and implementation
  • Video script writing & on-camera presenter

The firearm industry is one of the most highly regulated and complex of all industries. As an attorney in either civil or criminal cases, you will often be faced with a matrix of subjects that goes beyond the simple mechanical operation of a firearm or the operation of a shooting facility.

A client in a capital murder case steadfastly claimed he did not pull the trigger, but instead the gun must have malfunctioned and discharged of its own accord, a claim that was dismissed out-of-hand. We were able to show how an accidental discharge could have happened based upon an interacting matrix of firearm design, mechanics and physiology.

For another client, due to the limitations of bringing a live firearm in the courtroom, we made a video demonstrating how his handgun operates and why the gun was not able to be fired despite the presence of a loaded magazine.

Elements that often impact firearm-related litigation include the use of force continuum, industry standard safety practices, the physiological elements associated with firearm operation, mechanical functionality, education and training standards or best practices and firearm-specific mechanics.

Shooting range-related issues can include best practices, standard operating procedures, environmental concerns and lead mitigation, range design and maintenance and security.

One of the most critical elements of firearm-related cases is they often have a strong emotional element built on a foundation of misinformation. While finding a qualified, experienced subject matter expert is critical to the outcome of your case, it is equally important that the testimony not only informs the court of the facts surrounding the issues, but that it does so in an even, thoughtful manner to counteract the emotional element.

SAFER USA Consulting Group has brought together a diverse group of industry experts with a cumulative total of over 150 years’ experience. Seasoned professionals with broad-based experience within the industry who are capable of diagnosing and explaining in simple, easy-to-understand language the principle points to aid and assist you as either a plaintiff or defense attorney.

In addition, SAFER USA Consulting Group can write, executive produce, and provide on-camera experts for professional quality instructional videos to support your efforts when it is impractical or impossible to give a live demonstration in the courtroom or go on location.

An attorney, whether defending or prosecuting a case involving the use of firearms, can rely upon SAFER USA’s team of experts to cover virtually all of the complex issues they may encounter.

Equally important, our team of experts have the contacts and resources to secure virtually any information that may be needed to aid the prosecutor or the defense attorney in the handling of their case.

Please contact us for a free telephone consultation to discuss how we can support you and your client.

 

 

David A. Lombardo

Area of Expertise: Design, maintenance, operation and use of firearms and levels of force relating to the use of firearms for personal protection; range safety and standard operating procedures; and training program design and implementation.

 

David is president of SAFER USA, a Chicago-based firearms training school that has trained over 7,000 students since it opened in October 2006. He is an NRA Training Counselor certified to teach and to train and certify instructors to teach: Basic Pistol, Shotgun and Rifle; Home Firearm Safety; Personal Protection in the Home; Personal Protection Outside the Home; and Metallic Cartridge & Shotgun Shell Reloading.

He is an NRA Regional Refuse To Be A Victim Counselor, Chief Range Safety Officer and Law Enforcement Instructor. He is also a State of Illinois Certified Firearms Instructor and Concealed Carry Instructor, Utah Concealed Carry Instructor, tactical pistol instructor and specializes in the use of force for self-defense and in cases of home invasion.

David holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in education and technical training from the University of Illinois, has taught high school and was an assistant professor at Lousiana Tech University, associate professor and department head at Bowling Green State University (Ohio) and academic dean at Lewis University.

David is a U.S. Army Vietnam veteran. He served as a sworn, armed auxiliary deputy for nearly two years in Ohio and for 18 years with Will County, Illinois. David is the executive director of the annual Clyde Howell NRA Youth Shooting Sports Camp for youth ages 10-16; president of the 1500 member, 280 acre Aurora Sportsmen’s Club, an Endowment Life Member of the National Rifle Association; a Life member of the Illinois State Rifle Association; and a life-long upland, waterfowl and big game hunter.

Edward Ronkowski

 

Area of Expertise: Use of force, Illinois firearm & concealed carry law.

 

Ed is an Illinois Concealed Carry Instructor, NRA Instructor for Basic Pistol, Rifle and Shotgun, Range Safety Officer and specializes in the use of force continuum.

Ed retired after 29 years as an Assistant State’s Attorney in Cook and Will counties (Illinois) where he prosecuted dozens of murder cases and thousands of other felonies involving firearms, served as a Police Legal Adviser for the Moline and East Moline Illinois police departments, and was a Special Assistant Attorney General for the State of Illinois. Ed argued and won a Second Amendment case on behalf of the Illinois State Rifle Association before the Illinois Supreme Court.

Ed is the author of “Uses and Misuses of Deadly Force,” 28 DePaul Law Review 701. He lectured on Firearms Legal Liability for the Illinois State Police, Police Training Center-East Moline and for the Cook and Will County State’s Attorney’s Office. He has also authored numerous articles on firearm law for the quarterly publication, The Illinois Shooter.

Ed is a member of the National Rifle Association, Illinois State Rifle Association, member of the ISRA Range and a Range Safety Officer. He is a longtime volunteer for the Boy Scouts of America and has been an avid upland and big game hunter since 1980.

Frank Smith

 

Area of Expertise: Shooting range site investigation, remediation, and environmental oversight including lead remediation. Environmental/health & safety (EHS) auditing, environmental site assessment & investigation management activities and EHS program development for industrial, commercial and residential properties.

 

Frank has over 30 years’ experience as the Environmental Engineer/Manager of Environmental Engineering and Health & Safety Services (EHS) for Burgess-Norton Mfg. Co., Geneva, Illinois (BN), a division of Chicago-based AMSTED Industries Inc. During his career at BN/AMSTED, Frank conducted extensive EHS audits of over 40 different facilities and managed over a dozen site investigations, including remediation activities associated with same.

Frank has received numerous environmental certifications/accreditations attesting to his expertise as an environmental professional including:

  • National Registry of Environmental Professionals (Registered Environmental Manager and Certified Environmental Auditor)
  • Institute for Hazardous Materials Management (Certified Hazardous Materials Manager)
  • Board Of Environmental Auditor Certifications (Certified Professional Environmental Auditor and Certified Professional Health & Safety Auditor)
  • Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (Licensed Industrial Wastewater Treatment System Operator)

Frank is a member of the National Rifle Association, the Illinois State Rifle Association and the Aurora Sportsmen’s Club.

 

Martin Wezeman

 

Area of Expertise: Shooting range design, development & maintenance

 

 

Marty is a graduate of the National Rifle Association’s Range Development and Operations Program and has been a member of the NRA Range Technical Team since November 2009. The NRA Range Technical Team is a nationwide network of volunteers trained by the NRA in the field of shooting range development, design and operations. He has inspected and reported on public, private and police ranges throughout the Great Lakes Region.

Marty is an NRA Chief Range Safety Officer; an NRA Certified Instructor: Rifle, Pistol, Shotgun, Personal Protection in the Home, Personal Protection Outside the Home, Home Firearm Safety, and Refuse To Be A Victim; and a State of Illinois Concealed Carry Instructor.

Marty is a Vietnam veteran and served in the United States Marine Corps from 1965 to 1969. He is a Benefactor member of the National Rifle Association, Life member of the Illinois State Rifle Association, a member of the ISRA Range and a Range Safety Officer.

 

Video Production

Due to the nature of firearm testimony, it is often impossible to properly demonstrate firearm operation, practices and procedures in the court room. Similarly, issues of site remediation and reconstruction of specific scenarios are often best demonstrated through the use of video production. SAFER USA Consulting Group offers professional quality video production services, including concept development, script writing, on-camera talent and executive producing utilizing a local-area camera and editing crew.

Video production can be done in a studio, classroom, on a shooting range for live-fire demonstration using equivalent firearms to those pertinent to the case or any other location applicable to the testimony. Because script development and writing is done by subject matter experts, it can be carefully tailored to support the expert testimony.

Contact SAFER USA Consulting Group for details.