The legal team for Alex Jones closed out 2019 with a bang, garnering upward of $100,000 in sanctions and fees from an extremely irate Texas state judge in one of the multiple defamation suits over the Infowars host’s description of grieving Sandy Hook parents as “crisis actors.”
The Daily Beast reports that Travis County Judge Scott Jenkins was singularly unimpressed with the cavalier approach to discovery and document retention by Jones in the lawsuit filed by Neil Heslin, whose 6-year-old son Jesse was killed in the 2012 Connecticut mass shooting. On December 9, Heslin’s lawyers filed a motion for sanctions against Jones after Infowars sent a corporate representative who “had little to no information” relevant to the company’s decision to air Jones’s rants describing the shooting as a “big hoax” to gin up public support for gun control.
Back in 2014, Jones claimed to have reached his conclusion after “deep research.” But in a recent deposition, he blamed his false statements on “like a form of psychosis back in the past where I basically thought everything was staged, even though I’m now learning a lot of times things aren’t staged.” He later discovered that 26 people really were killed at Sandy Hook, but defended his prior conduct, saying, “So I think as a pundit, someone giving an opinion, that, you know, my opinions have been wrong. But they were never wrong consciously to hurt people.”
Unfortunately, the evolution of his “opinions” on the mass shooting may be forever lost to history. Heslin’s attorneys claim that Infowars disregarded a preservation order for pertinent social media posts and Slack messages about the allegedly defamatory broadcasts.
But that wasn’t even the most embarrassing screw up by Jones’s legal team in 2019. Second-place honors go to his Connecticut attorneys, who failed to screen his emails before dumping them on plaintiff’s counsel, inadvertently transmitting images of child pornography in the process.
The gold medal still belongs to Jones’s attorney Norman Pattis, who sat next to his client during a broadcast where Jones pounded a photograph of opposing counsel while threatening, “One million dollars to put your head on a pike” and insisting he couldn’t have sent the child porn because “I like women with big giant tits and big asses. I don’t like kids like you goddamn rapists.”
So, graded on a curve, the $100,000 fine is really just a minor bump in the road. If Jones’s Texas attorneys want to beat the Pattis record, they’re going to have to seriously step up their game. Gentlemen, START YOUR ENGINES!