InfoWars shock-jock Alex Jones CAN be sued by families of Sandy Hook massacre victims he 'defamed', court rules
INFOWARS founder Alex Jones can be sued for defamation by the families of victims of the Sandy Hook massacre, the Supreme Court of Texas ruled.
A ruling by the court on Friday gave families of victims the legal ability to sue the fear-mongering conspiracy theorist for his role in spreading false rumors of the children victims of the school shooting, saying he can be held liable in four different defamation suits.
Jones, on his flagship publication InfoWars, is subject to liability in four separate defamation suits filed over the last two-plus years by parents of children killed during the Sandy Hook massacre.
One of the suits is also brought on by a man Jones and InfoWars falsely identified as the person who carried out the Parkland massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
All four suits were filed in Travis County, Austin in Texas.
After the 2012 school shooting, in which a man who had illegally obtained guns killed 20 children and six teachers in Newtown, Connecticut, Jones took to his media company to spread false conspiracies of the massacre.
Jones alleged the murders were a "false flag" operation meant to get rid of the Second Amendment and take away people's weapons.
He then ridiculed the parents of the children victims, saying they were "crisis actors."
"So if children were lost at Sandy Hook, my heart goes out to each and every one of those parents," Jones said in 2016. "And the people who say they’re parents that I see on the news."
"The only problem is, I’ve watched a lot of soap operas. And I’ve seen actors before. And I know when I’m watching a movie and when I’m watching something real," he said.
Of the suits include one by Leonard Pozner and his ex-wife Veronique De La Rosa, and another by Neil Heslin, who both sued Jones in the spring of 2018 and are represented by Mark Bankston.
"Our clients have been tormented for five years by Mr. Jones’ ghoulish accusations that they are actors who faked their children’s deaths as part of a fraud on the American people," Bankston said in a statement. "Enough is enough."
Scarlett Lewis then sued Jones and InfoWars in late 2018, with her petition alleging Jones had continued forcing families to relive the pain of losing their loved ones.
"Since the day of the shooting, InfoWars has aggressively promoted a dreadful and despicable false narrative about Sandy Hook, mocking the families as liars and accusing them of a sinister conspiracy. Plaintiff’s family has been specifically targeted in this campaign of harassment," read Lewis' petition.
"These baseless and vile accusations, which have been pushed by InfoWars and Mr. Jones a continuous basis since the shooting, advance the idea that the Sandy Hook massacre did not happen, or that it was staged by the government and concealed using actors, and that the families of the victims are participants in a horrifying cover-up," it continued.
"InfoWars knew its assertions were false or made these statements with reckless and outrageous disregard for their truth," it ended.
Lastly, Marcel Fontane similarly sued Jones in 2018 after he was incorrectly identified by Jones as the Parkland shooter.
"Mr. Jones and Infowars have long been consumed with paranoia over the prospect of communist infiltration and indoctrination," read his suit. "Over the past year alone, Infowars has featured hundreds of sensationalist articles and videos focusing on the threat of communist agitation and conspiracies."
Each suit seeks damages over $1 million.
Six additional families of Sandy Hook victims have additional lawsuits pending in Connecticut.
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