Parents of Sandy Hook Victim at Alex Jones Trial Seek $150 Million in Damages
This is the first time that the family of a victim’s victim has placed a dollar value on the hurt victim. Jones caused by spreading falsehoods about the school shooting.
- AUSTIN Texas AUSTIN, Texas — Attorneys representing the children’s parents who was killed during Sandy Hook’s school shooting Sandy Hook school shooting told jurors in the city on Tuesday that conspiracy-broadcaster Alex Jones should pay them $150 million for lying to them that they had been involved in a plot by the government to fabricate the shooting to use as a cover for the fight against guns.The figure of $150 million, suggested by the lawyer for the parents, Mark Bankston, represents the first time that the family of Sandy Hook victims Sandy Hook victim has put an exact dollar figure on the victim’s pain. Jones and his Infowars broadcast and website, both based in Austin that was created by the spreading of deceit about the December. 14th, 2012 shooter’s attack that occurred in Newtown, Conn., that killed 20 first graders and six teachers.The dollar amount, although big, was acceptable and appropriate, the Mr. Bankston said, calling the allegations of Mr. Jones’s false allegations “the most despicable and vile campaign of defamation and slander in American history.”
He. Jones, who was present in the courtroom for the opening statements of both sides Tuesday, appeared to be a bit agitated by the proposed verdict. During a break he exploded in anger in the corridor outside the courtroom, calling the proceedings a “show trial” and deeming them a “Constitution-destroying, absolute, total and complete travesty.”
Before the trial started, Mr. Jones momentarily placed a length of duct tape on his mouth, sporting the Infowars.com logo as well as”Save the 1st” in its place “Save the 1st,” which refers towards the First Amendment. The defendant. Jones laid the tape with its slogan upon the desk in front of him during opening remarks, in front of the jury. He was shuffling his shoulders in disapproval against Mr. Bankston’s comments.
He was sitting close to Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis parent of the boy who was killed in the massacre at Sandy Hook, Jesse Lewis Jesse Lewis, age 6.
This trial will be the first trial of three in which juries decide what amount they will award the families of victims for damages. In the first trial the jury will hear from Ms. Lewis and Mr. Heslin and Ms. Lewis will testify about the agony they’ve experienced since the shooting. Jones implied on his show in 2017 that the Mr. Heslin’s television memory of cradling Jesse’s corpse just after the shooting was not true. The family has endured several years of harassment and accusations.
Leonard Pozner and Veronique De La Rosa, grandparents of Noah Pozner, the youngest Sandy Hook victim, are scheduled to testify in another trial scheduled for September at Austin. In the same month, parents of 8 additional Sandy Hook victims will testify in the third trial in Connecticut.
The trials are scheduled to begin following the families of the 10 victims of the defamation suit won against the defendant Mr. Jones last year, in which the judges decided that he was at fault in the past for failing repeatedly to submit court-ordered evidence and documents. These rulings set the scene for the trials this summer where juries will give monetary damages to families as a result of their wins.
Mr. Jones’s attorney, Federico Reynal, suggested during the jury selection process on Monday that he’d like to ask jurors to give the parents one dollar for damages, mainly due to the fact that the trauma created through his client. Jones paled so greatly when compared to the tragic death of their child.
He said. Bankston said in his statement on Tuesday that the award of $150 million represented one dollar to compensate for the parents’ public image damage and one dollar to compensate for their emotional trauma for each one-quarter of Americans who stated in the 2013, Fairleigh Dickinson University survey that they believed Sandy Hook was a fake. Sandy Hook shooting was definitely or could be fake.
“For 10 years, Mr. Jones has robbed Neil and Scarlett of the time they needed to heal over the violent death of their son Jesse, because Mr. Jones wanted to sell more of his products,” the judge said. “That is a huge verdict, to be sure, but it is one that will do justice to the level of harm done in this case.”
He. Reynal began his opening remarks by referring to Mr. Bankston’s talk “a conspiracy of lies.”
“I am honored to represent Alex Jones” and his company”, Alex Jones. Reynal said. “He is one of the most polarizing figures in this nation,” who has previously been “canceled, punished for statements related to this case.”
The Mr. Reynal repeated Mr. Jones’s long-held belief that he was simply repeating the false assertions of others, such as those in the Infowars audience. In actual fact the truth is that Ms. Jones spread false claims regarding the shooting on his program just several hours after the incident.
The author. Reynal also advanced a assertion made by others who have been sued for distributing politically-motivated lies, which includes falsehoods about the 2020 presidential election The claim, regardless of how outrageous or bizarre it isn’t defamatory if the person who made it believes that it is real or like the Mr. Jones has claimed, they cannot distinguish the truth from lies because they’ve been deceived by the claims of is. Reynal called “mainstream media lies.”
Travis County District Court Judge Maya Guerra Gamble repeatedly cautioned Mr. Jones’s attorneys that they weren’t pursuing the First Amendment right to make false claims, since the defendant had already waived his right to trial in the defamation lawsuits.
The proposed award of $150 million would be just for compensatory damages Bankston said. Bankston said. Jurors will determine the issue of whether to give punitive damages. Jones. Jones has achieved revenues over $50 million per year in recent years, and has sold diet pills, conspiracy-focused videos and books as well as body armor and doomsday gear during his television shows. He. Bankston aims to present documents made public by Infowars in preparation for the trial, indicating the fact that. Jones’s shows about Sandy Hook had caused Infowars’s audience and product sales to rise.
Sandy Hook families say they have a bigger goal. Sandy Hook families say they have a bigger goal in mind they want to use the trial to raise awareness among Americans to the increasing harm done to vulnerable individuals and their civic lives by the spread of viral falsehoods in the political realm, including theories that claim mass shootings are not real or false claims about an alleged stolen election in 2020 which brought violence to the Capitol on January. 6 or 7 in 2021.
“This a case about creating change,” Mr. Bankston told the jury on Tuesday. “You have the power to stop this from ever happening again.”
The Rev. Jones, an ally of former President Donald J. Trump who broadcast the Jan. 6 incident live, as it unfolded and is being investigated for his role in arranging the events surrounding the violence.