On Wednesday, a Connecticut jury ordered Infowars host Alex Jones to pay a total of $965 million to the families of eight people killed in the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
According to the Hartford Courant, Jones defaulted on the defamation trial because he repeatedly failed to provide the court with business records. Judge Barbara Bellis subsequently concluded that Jones’ claims that the mass shooting was a hoax were defamatory and led to ongoing harassment targeting the victims’ families.
In 2012, Adam Lanza killed his mother before entering Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown and fatally shooting 20 children and six adults. Lanza then turned the gun on himself.
Over the years, Sandy Hook shooting victims’ families have faced unfounded accusations— fanned by Jones and his cohorts — that they faked their children’s deaths. Specifically, Jones said on his platform that the 2012 mass shooting was a “false flag” operation committed by “crisis actors.” At some points, the victims’ families have had to prove their slain children’s existence.
In addition to the families of eight shooting victims, an FBI agent was also awarded a default judgment on Wednesday.
According to CNN, the breakdown of the $965 million in compensatory damages are as follows:
- Robert Parker, father of 6-year-old Emilie Parker: $120,000,000
- William Sherlach, husband of 56-year-old school employee Mary Sherlach: $36,000,000
- David Wheeler, father of 6-year-old Ben Wheeler: $55,000,000
- Francine Wheeler, mother of 6-year-old Ben Wheeler: $54,000,000
- Jacqueline Barden, mother of 7-year-old Daniel Barden: $28,800,000
- Mark Barden, father of 7-year-old Daniel Barden: $57,600,000
- Nicole Hockley, mother of 6-year-old Dylan Hockley: $73,600,000
- Ian Hockley, father of 6-year-old Dylan Hockley: $81,600,000
- Jennifer Hensel, for the estate of Jeremy Richman (died by suicide), father of 6-year-old Avielle Richman: $52,000,000
- Donna Soto, mother of teacher Victoria Soto: $48,000,000
- Carlee Soto-Parisi, sister of teacher Victoria Soto: $66,000,000
- Carlos Matthew Soto, brother of teacher Victoria Soto: $57,600,000
- Jillian Soto-Marino, sister of teacher Victoria Soto: $68,800,000
- William Aldenberg, FBI agent and first responder: $90,000,000
- Erica Lafferty/trustee Richard M. Coan, daughter of school principal Dawn Hochsprung: $76,000,000
In August, a Texas jury ordered Jones to pay roughly $49 million to the parents of 6-year-old Sandy Hook shooting victim Jesse Lewis.
A third lawsuit filed by a Sandy Hook family is pending.
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[Featured image: AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File]