Mistrial denied as jury weighs damages for Alex Jones in Sandy Hook defamation trial

August 4 (Reuters) – A Texas judge on Thursday rejected Alex Jones’ request for a mistrial as jury deliberations resumed in a defamation case over the U.S. conspiracy theorist’s false claims about the Sandy Hook mass shooting.

The mistrial plea came after a two-week trial revealed that Jones’ lawyer had accidentally sent plaintiffs two years’ worth of messages from the US conspiracy theorist.

Federico Andino Reynal, Jones’ attorney, told Judge Maya Guerra Gamble that the plaintiffs’ attorneys should have destroyed the records immediately. The parents’ attorney, Mark Bankston, used the texts to undermine Jones’ testimony during cross-examination Wednesday.

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Jones, the founder of the Infowars radio show and podcast, is on trial to determine the amount of damages he owes for spreading false news about the 2012 killings of 20 children and six staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. December 14 .

Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, the parents of slain six-year-old Jesse Lewis, are seeking $150 million from Jones and his company, Free Speech Systems LLC.

Heslin told jurors Tuesday that Jones’ lies made his life “hell” and led him to stalk and make death threats against people who believed he lied about his son’s death.

Jones previously claimed that the mainstream media and gun control activists conspired to fabricate the Sandy Hook tragedy and that the shooting was staged using crisis actors.

Jones, who later admitted the shooting happened, told an Austin jury Wednesday it was “100% real.”

Gamble entered a rare default judgment against Jones in the case in 2021.

Free Speech Systems filed for bankruptcy last week. Jones said Monday on Infowars that the filing will help the company stay on the air while it appeals.

Jones faces a similar defamation suit in Connecticut state court, where he was also found liable in default.

The Sandy Hook gunman, 20-year-old Adam Lanza, used a Remington Bushmaster rifle to carry out the killings. It ended when Lanza killed himself as police sirens approached.

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Report by Jack Queen; Edited by Noeleen Walder, Amy Stevens and Howard Goller

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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