Alex Jones verdict live: Conspiracy theorist to pay Sandy Hook family $4m compensation

Alex Jones ordered to pay more than $4m compensatory damages to Sandy Hook family

A verdict has been reached in the trial of Infowars founder and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. A jury in Austin, Texas, says he must pay more than $4m in compensation to the parents of six-year-old Jesse Lewis who was killed in the 2012 Sandy Hook massacre.

Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis filed a defamation suit against Jones over his claims that the school shooting, that saw 20 children and six adults killed, was a hoax.

Both gave impassioned testimony when in the witness box about how Jones’ lies — broadcast to millions — had impacted their lives and prolonged their grief. Ms Lewis able to confront Jones and look him straight in the eye when speaking about her son dela.

The suit was filed for a total of $150m with eight separate charges. On Friday the jury will return to consider evidence relating to whether punitive damages should also be assigned to Jones, which could bring the total award much higher.

Jones faces another trial in Texas brought by another family, and another in Connecticut for the families of eight of the victims. It also transpired during the trial that his own lawyer had mistakenly shared the entire contents of Jones’ phone with the opposition legal team who had been asked to provide it to the January 6 committee.


Recap: Why Alex Jones is being sued by the victims’ families

Hours after 26 people were shot and killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012, Alex Jones began spouting false claims that the massacre wasn’t real.

More than 10 years later, the far-right conspiracy theorist’s inflammatory comments have continued to haunt him the families of the shooting victims – 20 of which were young children – hold him accountable in court.

Following multiple attempts from the Infowars host to delay and derail justice, his time is finally up.


Jones loses bid for a mistrial and to destroy texts mistakenly shared with opposing legal team

Alex Jones launched a failed bid to destroy text messages mistakenly sent to the lawyers of Sandy Hook families as a jury deliberates on damages owed by the Infowars host for defamation.

Mr Jones’ attorney Andino Reynal filed for an emergency motion for protection on Thursday morning and also requested a mistrial over the texts he felt in error as part of discovery.

Mr Reynal said the private medical records and communications covered by attorney-client-privilege, and defendant by attorney Mark Bank plaintiff’s texts of looking at files unrelated to the case.


Jones tried to hawk supplements from stand in $150m defamation trial

Alex Jones tried to promote his supplement business while on the stand in his $150m Sandy Hook defamation trial.

The conspiracy theorist boasted about the quality of the vitamins sold on Infowars in an extended rant to the jury.

That jury is responsible for deciding how much Jones must pay in damages to Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis who lost their six-year-old son Jesse Lewis in the 2012 school shooting that claimed the lives of 20 children and six adults.


‘You think I’m an actress?’: Sandy Hook victim’s mother leads a powerful condemnation of Alex Jones

The mother of a six-year-old boy murdered in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting has testified in the Alex Jones defamation case, and spoke directly to the right-wing Infowars host about the devastating impact of his conspiratorial claims.

Scarlett Lewis and Neil Heslin, the parents of Jesse Lewis, are suing Jones and his company Free Speech Media for $150m over the harassment they say they suffered after the 2012 shooting in Newtown.

“Jesse was real,” Ms Lewis told Jones as he sat in the courtroom in Travis County, Texas, as she testified on Tuesday. “I am a real mom.”


Both legal teams claim victory with verdict

Both sides have found a way to claim victory from the jury’s verdict to award the plaintiffs $4.1m in compensatory damages.

“That’s a darn good start and we now have the punishment phase,” said Mark Bankston, an attorney for Sandy Hook parents Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis.

“I think on behalf of the entire legal team today was an absolute vindication for the American legal system. We’re very pleased with the verdict thus far and we look forward to presenting the rest of the case,” said Andino Reynal, the attorney for Alex Jones.

Punitive damages — which could be significantly higher — will be decided tomorrow.


Jones claims taking data from phone violates 4th, 5th and 6th amendments

In an Infowards video released today, Jones claims via a lawyer that the “seizing and stealing” of the data on his phone violates his constitutional rights.


What about the punitive damages?

The jury will return tomorrow morning for the punitive damages portion.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs will call one witness, but Alex Jones will not be returning to the stand.

The jury will then decide punitive damages in addition to today’s $4,110,000 award for actual damages.

There is a cap on what punitive damages can be but it is deemed as a reasonable multiplier, perhaps as high as ten times the compensatory damages.

Here’s Attorney Mark Bankston explaining:


Jones ordered to pay more than $4m compensatory damages to Sandy Hook family

Right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones has been ordered to pay more than $4m in compensatory damages to the family of a Sandy Hook victim.

Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, whose six-year-old son Jesse was among the 20 students and six adults killed in the mass shooting, sued Jones and his media company for the claims he has made that the massacre was a “false flag” operation and that the victims did not actually exist.

They had asked for $150m in compensatory damages and another trial to determine punitive damages is now expected to take place on Friday.


Verdict reached: Jones to pay $4m in compensatory damages

The jury has reached a verdict, but will return at 8.45am tomorrow morning to hear more evidence regarding any punitive damages they may want to impose.

Alex Jones is already guilty, so on the eight counts, the following amounts were awarded to the plaintiffs in damages:

This brings it to a total of more than $4m. Jones had previously claimed that more than $2m would wipe out his business.


Jury returns to the courtroom and is seated.

The verdict has been reached by 10 members of the jury.

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