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

By Jack Queen

(Reuters) -A Texas judge denied Alex Joness motion for a mistrial on Thursday as jury deliberations resumed in a defamation case on the U.S. conspiracy theorists false claims concerning the Sandy Hook mass shooting.

The mistrial request followed the disclosure through the two-week-long trial https://www.reuters.com/business/media-telecom/7-key-moments-alex-jones-sandy-hook-defamation-trial-2022-08-04 that Joness lawyer accidentally sent 2 yrs of the U.S. conspiracy theorists texts to the plaintiffs.

Federico Andino Reynal, a lawyer for Jones, told Judge Maya Guerra Gamble that attorneys for the plaintiffs must have immediately destroyed the records. A lawyer for the parents, Mark Bankston, used the texts to undercut Jones testimony during cross-examination on Wednesday.

Jones, founder of the Infowars radio show and webcast, is on trial to look for the quantity of damages he owes for spreading falsehoods concerning the killing of 20 children and six staff at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, on Dec. 14, 2012.

Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, the parents of slain six-year-old Jesse Lewis, would like just as much as $150 million from Jones and his company, Free Speech Systems LLC, for what their lawyer has called a vile campaign of defamation.

Heslin told jurors on Tuesday that Jones falsehoods had made his life hell and resulted in a campaign of harassment and death threats against him by individuals who believed he lied about his sons 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 acknowledged that the shooting occurred, told the Austin jury on Wednesday that it had been 100% real.

Gamble issued a rare default judgment against Jones in the event in 2021.

Free Speech Systems declared bankruptcy the other day. Jones said throughout a Monday broadcast of Infowars that the filing can help the company stick to the air although it appeals.

Jones faces an identical defamation suit in Connecticut state court, where he’s got been found liable in a default judgment.

The Sandy Hook gunman, Adam Lanza, 20, used a Remington Bushmaster rifle to handle the massacre. It ended when Lanza killed himself with the approaching sound of police sirens.

(Reporting by Jack Queen;Editing by Noeleen Walder, Amy Stevens and Howard Goller)

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