AUSTIN — Parents of children who died in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Conn. have filed lawsuits against Austin-native Alex Jones and his conspiracy theorist website, InfoWars, for defamation, according to court documents obtained by KVUE.
The two lawsuits -- filed on behalf of Leonard Pozner, Veronique De La Rosa and Neil Heslin -- arised out of accusations the lawsuits state were made by InfoWars in 2017. The lawsuits also name Free Speech Systems and Owen Shroyer, who "has been a reporter for InfoWars." The lawsuits were filed April 16 in a Travis County district court.
InfoWars falsely claimed that De La Rosa "was an actor in a faked interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper used to cover up the 'truth' about Sandy Hook," one of the lawsuits states. The other lawsuit alleges that Heslin was accused of "lying about whether he actually held his son's body and observed a bullet hole in his head."
InfoWars and Jones have allegedly pushed since the day of the 2012 shooting that the massacre did not happen, that it was staged by the government and that the parents of the victims are participants in a cover-up. Twenty-six children and educators died in the Sandy Hook shooting.
KVUE spoke with the attorney for both families, Bill Ogden. Ogden said the lawsuits will hopefully stop Jones from making what they say are false claims.
"The first amendment is not a license to walk around to say whatever you want, make up whatever stories you want, and not have to face the consequences, injuries or damages that you cause by them," Ogden said.
Jones did make some comments about the lawsuits on Tuesday. He is pleading with the families to imagine the pain of an expensive lawsuit.
"This is a big challenge to Infowars. It's not like I'm 'Mr. Daddy Warbucks' here and I got all this money here laying around to fight these things," Jones said.
The documents show the parents are suing Jones for defamation and seek damages in excess of $1 million.
This is not the first time Jones has come under fire for comments made on his show. Jones apologized in 2017 for helping propagate the fictitious 'pizzagate' conspiracy theory that Washington, D.C., pizzeria Comet Ping Pong was a front for a child sex trafficking ring led by John Podesta.