A federal jury yesterday awarded more than $4.45 million in a suit against the National Rifle Association brought by an Iowa couple — both NRA members and one a former board member — who said their reputations were smeared when NRA President Charlton Heston falsely accused them of staging a disruption at the organization’s July 1998 annual meeting in Philadelphia.

Sally and Kenneth Brodbeck said after the verdict that all they ever wanted was an apology and that they would never have sued if they had gotten one.

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