Texas jury on Friday ordered conspiracy theorist Alex Jones to pay $45.2 million in punitive damages to the parents of a child who was killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, adding to the $4.1 million he has to pay for the suffering he put them through by claiming for years that the nation’s deadliest school shooting was a hoax.The total – $49.3 million – is less than the $150 million sought by Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, whose 6-year-old son Jesse Lewis was among the 20 children and six educators killed in the deadliest classroom shooting in U.S. history.
But the trial marks the first time Jones has been held financially liable for peddling lies about the 2012 attack in Newtown, Connecticut. Alex Jones case: Sandy Hook family seeks punitive damages on top of $4.1M awarded After the verdict, Lewis said that Jones has been held accountable.
She said when she took the stand and looked Jones in the eye, she thought of her son who was credited with saving lives by yelling “run” when the killer paused in his rampage.“He stood up to the bully Adam Lanza and saved nine of his classmates’ lives,” Lewis said. “I hope that I did that incredible courage justice when I was able to confront Alex Jones, who is also a bully.
I hope that inspires other people to do the same.”Earlier this week, Jones testified that any award over $2 million would “sink us.” His company Free Speech Systems, which is Infowars’ parent company, filed for bankruptcy protection during the first week of the trial.Punitive damages are meant to punish defendants for particularly egregious conduct, beyond monetary compensation awarded to the individuals they hurt. A high punitive award is also seen as a chance for jurors to send a wider
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