WEST MONROE, La. (KTVE/KARD)— An Austin jury found Infowars host Alex Jones must pay more than $4 million to the family of the Sandy Hook shooting victim over claims on the show the shooting was a hoax and their parents were crisis actors.
The verdict, reached on Thursday, August 4th, marks the first of two sums of money the jurors have been asked to calculate after hearing nearly two weeks of testimony in the case.
Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, who lost their 6-year-old son Jesse in the 2012 mass shooting, sued Jones for defamation and inflicting mental anguish. Jones was found liable by the court last year; the jury was tasked with coming up with the number of actual damages he owes to compensate Heslin and Lewis.
The plaintiffs asked the jury to consider awarding $150 million — a dollar for each of the parents representing the 75 million Americans they say believed Sandy Hook was or could have been fake. Jones’ team argued the plaintiffs have not brought enough evidence to show Jones’ words caused their anguish or to justify that large of a sum.
Jones and his team are bracing for a second verdict with additional, punitive damages — likely to be returned later this week. Plaintiff’s attorneys said they will bring a financial expert to testify before the jury is given their second charge.
This is a developing story