BLOGS: Georgia IP Litigation



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Thursday, August 14, 2014, 9:21 AM

Blue Force Seeks to Cut Off Supply of Infringing Weapon Slings to U.S. Marines (and others)

Blue Force Gear, Inc. (“Blue Force”), brought two patent infringement actions in June 2014 against Raine, Inc. (“Raine”), an Indiana corporation, and Savvy Sniper , LLC (“Savvy Sniper”), an Ohio corporation, relating to United States Patent No. 8,733,601 B2 (the ‘601 Patent) entitled “Systems, Methods, and Apparatus for Supporting a Firearm from a Person,” which issued on May 27, 2014 – a few weeks before the suits were filed.  Figure 1 from the ‘601 Patent is depicted below:

Raine is accused of selling the following slings for firearms that infringe the ‘601 Patent through a dealer in Columbus (Commando Military Supply / Maneuver Center) and one in the Ft. Benning PX (Patriot Outfitters, LLC), as well as to the Defense Logistics Agency (“DLA”), government purchaser for the U.S. Marines, in Albany: “the General Purpose Quick Adjust Sling; the Ambi Quick Adjust Sling; the COBRA Quick Adjust Sling; and the Heavy Weapon Quick Adjust Sling.  The COBRA Quick Adjust Sling is pictured below:

Similarly, Savvy Sniper is accused of selling the same slings for firearms that infringe the ‘601 Patent through a dealer in Bogart (Clyde Armory), as well as to the DLA.  The Heavy Weapon Quick Adjust Sling is pictured below:

In addition to the patent infringement claims against both companies, Blue Force asserts Tortious Interference with Business Relations.  Blue Force seeks a finding of infringement, damages, for which it requests trebled and punitive damages, a permanent injunction, delivery of all infringing products (or award of a compulsory royalty as an alternative), attorneys’ fees, pre- and post-judgment interest, and such other relief as the Court deems proper.

Note:  A third case brought by Blue Force asserting infringement of the '601 Patent nd tortious interference with business relations was filed on June 16, 2014, and voluntarily dismissed without prejudice by a pleading dated July 24 and filed August 1, 2014.  That case was Blue Force Gear, Inc. v. ATS Tactical Gear, LLC, No. 1:14-cv-93(WLS).

The cases are Blue Force Gear, Inc. v. Savvy Sniper, LLC, No. 1:14-cv-101(WLS), filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia, Albany Division, on June 23, 2014, and assigned to U.S. District Judge W. Louis Sands; and Blue Force Gear, Inc. v. Raine, Inc., 1:14:CV-99(WLS), filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia, Albany Division, on June 19, 2014, and assigned to U.S. District Judge W. Louis Sands.

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Wednesday, August 6, 2014, 4:05 PM

Patent Dispute Erupts Over Mobile Digital Recording Devices

Utility Associates, Inc. (“Utility”), a Delaware corporation with a place of business in Tucker, Georgia, filed a patent infringement action on June 12, 2014, against Digital Ally Inc. (“Digital”), a Nevada corporation operating out of Lenexa, Kansas relating to United States Patent No. 6,831,556 (the ‘556 Patent) entitled “Composite Mobile Digital Information System,” which issued on December 14, 2004.  In the Technical Field paragraph the patentee described the system as follows:  “In particular, the present invention is directed to a system for use in public and commercial vehicles to capture video, audio, and related information for surveillance and evidentiary purposes.”

The complaint recites as background information two prior complaints:  (1) a declaratory judgment action filed by Digital in Kansas in October of 2013 [Civil Action NO. 2:13-cv-02550-SAC-KGS (Kansas City Division) – the “Kansas Action”]; and (2) an earlier complaint by Utility on June 3, 2014, which was not actually filed (the “Aborted Filing”).  The Kansas Action was dismissed, although that dismissal is currently under appeal.  Utility explained in its complaint that it was curing the Aborted Filing by refiling the complaint.

According to the complaint, after the Kansas Action was filed, Utility reviewed Digitial’s products in light of the ‘556 Patent and determined that several Digital products infringe the patent.

Utility explains in the suit that it “is engaged in the business of manufacturing, distributing, and selling digital video imaging and storage products and methods.”

The complaint alleges infringement by three Digital products:  the “DVM-500 Plus,” “DVM-750,” and “DVM-800” in-car video systems.  The “DVM-500 Plus” system is pictured below:


Figure 2 of the ‘556 Patent (below) is a diagram of the operation of the patented invention:
 

Digital is accused of intentional infringement based in part on its knowledge of the ‘556 Patent as disclosed in the Kansas Action.  Utility seeks an injunction, the surrender or destruction of all infringing products, a report on compliance with the injunction, damages, trebled damages as a result of the intentional infringement, and such other relief as the Court deems just and proper.

The case is Utility Associates, Inc. v. Digital Ally, Inc. No. 1:14-cv-01847-RWS, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division, on June 12, 2014, and assigned to U.S. District Judge Richard W. Story.

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