- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Parents of two children slain during the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, have sued right-wing media personality Alex Jones for defamation over remarks he made in the mass shooting’s aftermath.

Mr. Jones, 44, was named in a pair of defamation lawsuit filed late Monday on behalf of the parents of two 6-year-old boys killed at Sandy Hook, Jessie Heslin and Noah Pozner, adding further litigation to the growing list of court cases introduced lately against the embattled InfoWars founder.

Both filed in Travis County District Court in Austin, Texas, each suit seeks more than $1 million in damages from Mr. Jones, his InfoWars website and its parent company, Free Speech Systems LLC., in responses to comments made nearly five years after 20 children and six adult staff members were killed in one of the worst school shootings in U.S. history.

InfoWars reporter Owen Shroyer is also named as a defendant in the suit filed by Neil Heslin, Jessie’s father.

“I lost my son. I buried my son. I held my son with a bullet hole through his head,” Mr. Heslin said in a June 2017 interview with NBC News’ Megyn Kelly.

Mr. Shroyer questioned Mr. Heslin’s remarks in a segment aired under the InfoWars umbrella the following week, according to his lawsuit.

“The statement [Plaintiff] made, fact-checkers on this have said cannot be accurate. He’s claiming that he held his son and saw the bullet hole in his head. That is his claim. Now, according to a timeline of events and a coroner’s testimony, that is not possible,” Mr. Shroyer said during a June 20 segment.

Mr. Jones endorsed Mr. Shroyer’s claim in a subsequent broadcast, according to the lawsuit, insisting: “The stuff I found was they never let them see their bodies.”

Pozner’s parents similarly alleged in their suit that Mr. Jones defamed them by suggesting they participated in a staged CNN interview last April.

“So here are these holier-than-thou people, when we question CNN, who is supposedly at the site of Sandy Hook, and they got in one shot leaves blowing, and the flowers that are around it, and you see the leaves blowing, and they go [gestures]. They glitch,” Mr. Jones said during a broadcast after their CNN interview, according to the lawsuit. “They’re recycling a green-screen behind them.”

Both suits were brought by Mark Bankston, a Houston-based attorney who filed a similar defamation suit against Mr. Jones earlier this month over claims he made following the recent mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Mr. Jones’s “statements were a continuation and elaboration of a yearslong campaign to falsely attack the honesty of the Sandy Hook parents, casting them as participants in a ghastly conspiracy and cover-up,” said Mr. Bankston, The New York Times reported.

“Even after these folks had to experience this trauma, for the next five years they were tormented by Alex Jones with vicious lies about them,” Mr. Bankston told HuffPost. “And these lies were meant to convince his audience that the Sandy Hook parents are frauds and have perpetrated a sinister lie on the American people.”

Mr. Jones did not immediately return a message seeking comment, and Mr. Shroyer could not immediately be reached.

Mr. Jones said earlier this month that he’s been sued over a dozen times during the past year, and that the avalanche of litigation amounts to attempted censorship.

President Trump notably appeared on Mr. Jones talk show in 2015 and told the host: “Your reputation is amazing.” Roger Stone, a former adviser to the Trump presidential election campaign, currently co-hosts a program with Mr. Shroyer, “War Room.”

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