Jury awards $965 million to Sandy Hook families in Alex Jones case
A jury has awarded $965 million to the families of eight victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre and one first responder, resolving a lawsuit that began in 2018 over Jones's claims the event never occurred, according to Reuters.
In December 2012, 20 students and six adults died in a mass shooting at the Newtown, Connecticut school. Jones claimed that the victims' families and the first responders to the 2012 tragedy were "crisis actors" on multiple occasions and asserted the massacre was staged to push gun control. Jones generated hundreds of millions of impressions on social media with his false claims about the event. The plaintiffs sought a sum of $550 million to match the total views his claims received, per CNN Business. Ultimately, the jury awarded the plaintiffs nearly double the already enormous sum.
The right-wing personality lost a separate suit earlier this year in Texas with a jury awarding the parents of a separate child who died in the massacre $4.1 million in compensatory damages and $45.2 million in punitive damages, though Texas law caps punitive damages in cases with no economic losses and Jones will likely pay only a fraction of that sum.
Jones's claims have prompted most of the major social media companies to remove him and his associated accounts from their platforms. In part due to the loss of revenue and reach, far-right news and commentary site Infowars, one of Jones's brands, filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protections in April of this year.