A judge ruled this week that Infowars host Alex Jones is legally responsible for the damages caused by his false assertions about the Sandy Hook massacre.
In documents released Thursday, Judge Maya Guerra Gamble issued default judgments against Jones, a conspiracy theorist who contended the December 2012 shooting, which left 26 dead, was a “giant hoax.” Of the 26 who died, 20 were young children. According to Judge Gamble, Jones and Inforwars did not comply with court orders to give information for the lawsuits brought against him by the parents of two of the young victims.
According to Huffington Post, which first reported on the default judgments, a jury will convene to determine how much Jones owes the plaintiffs. The two cases Jones lost are not the only ones he faces: Overall, nine families whose loved ones died in the shooting have sued him and Infowars. He had to pay $100,000 in legal fees to one family at the end of 2019.
Jones has gone through a number of lawyers in this process, but his most recent one, Brad Reeves, told the Austin-American Statesman last month that a default judgment would be “hugely excessive.” In the documents from Monday, reviewed by HuffPost and CNN, Judge Gamble wrote, “Furthermore, in considering whether lesser remedies would be effective, this Court has also considered Defendants’ general bad faith approach to litigation, Mr. Jones’ public threats, and Mr. Jones’ professed belief that these proceedings are ‘show trials.'”
A judgment like the ones handed down by Judge Gamble is rare in the legal world. Such a judgment is known as a “death penalty sanction.”
Reeves did not immediately return a request for comment.