Alex Jones ordered to pay $965 million for Sandy Hook lies
Jurors ordered conspiracy theorist Alex Jones on Wednesday to pay nearly $1 billion to Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting victims' relatives and an FBI agent, who said he turned their loss and trauma into years of torment by promoting the lie that the rampage was a hoax.
The $965 million verdict is the second big judgment against the Infowars host for spreading the myth that the deadliest school shooting in U.S. history never happened, and that the grieving families seen in news coverage were actors hired as part of a plot to take away people's guns.
The verdict came in a defamation lawsuit filed by some of the families of 26 people who were killed in the 2012 shooting, plus an FBI agent who was among the first responders. A Texas jury in August awarded nearly $50 million to the parents of another slain child.
Robbie Parker, who lost his 6-year-old daughter, Emilie, said outside the Connecticut court that he was proud that "what we were able to accomplish was just to simply tell the truth."
"And it shouldn't be this hard, and it shouldn't be this scary," said Parker, who became an early target of conspiracy theorists after he spoke at a news conference the day after the shooting. The jury awarded him the most of any plaintiff: $120 million.
Jones wasn't at court but reacted on his Infowars show.
As courtroom video showed the jury awards being read out, Jones said that he himself had never mentioned the plaintiffs' names.
"All made up. Hilarious," he said. "So this is what a show trial looks like. I mean, this is the left completely out of control."
Jones' lawyer, Norm Pattis, portrayed the trial as unfair and pledged to appeal.
"Today is a very, very, very dark day for freedom of speech," he said...
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