“Will this be a fight? Are we in China?” Jones asked after the plaintiff’s lawyer Chris Mattei pointed out the victim’s family in court, referring to people being publicly shamed Maoist rally. “I’ve said I’m sorry hundreds of times, and I’m done saying sorry.”
The shooting of 26 people, including 20 children, has for years headlined Infowars and other fringe sites promoting victims’ families as “crisis actors” involved in a campaign to curb the government’s “false flag operation.” Unfounded claims. Second Amendment rights. Jones later admitted the Holocaust was “100% real” and said it would be irresponsible to do otherwise.
Jones was ordered to pay more than $45 million in damages to the parents of Sandy Hook victims in a separate trial in Texas in August. He lost the Connecticut trial after Judge Barbara Bellis ruled in November that he tacitly accepted responsibility after refusing to turn over court-ordered financial records and other documents. Infowars and its parent company Free Speech Systems filed for bankruptcy this year as the Sandy Hook family filed a civil lawsuit.
Although Jones was grumpy in most of his testimony, hehe Occasionally there is a verbal fight with Ma Tai. When he was awakened, his own lawyers also worked hard to prevent him from providing exhaustive answers.
Bellis has repeatedly asked jurors to leave the courtroom in order to discuss Jones’ range of answers with attorneys. The frequency with which they left made her joke that they were working out today.
During the hours-long meeting, Jones used a question from Mattei to insert the address of a website that accepts cryptocurrency donations. He also answered “no” to the question of whether his credibility was most important to his audience, insisting his focus was “smashing the globalists.”
“Alex Jones is probably the most unsympathetic litigant I’ve seen in a long time,” said Jessica Levinson, a law professor at Loyola Marymount University.
“It’s a case of punishment, deterrence, and making people whole,” she said.
Representatives for Infowars could not be immediately reached early Friday.
How Rights Built Alex Jones – Even After His Sandy Hook Comments
In one exchange, Mattai accused Jones of targeting Sandy Hook’s parents on the backs, apparently referring to his claims that they were participants in the crisis. The lawyer referred to the parents in court, calling them “real people,” to which Jones responded: “Like all the Iraqis that you liberals kill and love.”
“You’re unbelievable. You can turn your emotions on and off at any time. You’re just chasing an ambulance,” Jones added.
At a time of heightened concern over online misinformation and disinformation, the size and scope of damages awarded by jury will be closely watched.
“What these verdicts are is important because it tells us how much we think people are hurt by this kind of speech,” Levinson said. “It tells us that this could be an effective way of trying to shut down the Alex Jones of the world.”
UCLA law professor Eugene Warlock said the details of the case — such as whether the jury believed Jones’ false statement was a deliberate lie — will help determine the type and size of damages.
“If you’re going to try to convince a jury to accept punitive damages, you have to show that it wasn’t just an honest error,” said Warlock, an expert on free speech law.
According to the Associated Press, a lawyer for Jones argued that damages should be limited and that the victim’s relatives had exaggerated the harm caused by his client’s false assertions.
Several relatives of Sandy Hook victims took a stand this week, sharing stories of being forced to travel under false names for security purposes and told they were going to hell by those who falsely claimed the shooting was a hoax.
Jennifer Hensel, whose daughter Avielle was killed in the shooting and whose husband committed suicide in 2019, testified that some conspiracy theorists said they believed she helped fabricate the tragedy and Her child is still alive.
“Gosh, wouldn’t it be amazing if she was?” she said, her voice hoarse.
The trial is scheduled to resume on Friday, and Jones plans to continue to testify.