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Parents of Sandy Hook victims rip into ‘psychopath’ Alex Jones at trial


The father of a 6-year-old boy killed in the Sandy Hook school shooting says “criminals like Alex Jones” made healing impossible during his testimony at the Infowars founder’s defamation trial Tuesday.

Neil Heslin called Jones a “coward” for skipping his testimony and criticized the speaker for making false claims about the mass shooting, sharing that Jones’ theories left his family living in a constant state of fear.

“What was said about me and Sandy Hook itself resonates around the world,” Heslin testified in Travis County Circuit Court in Austin, Texas, on Tuesday.

“As time went on I really realized how dangerous it was… My life was threatened. I fear for my life, I fear for my safety.”

Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, the parents of Jesse Lewis, are suing Jones for $150 million for spreading false conspiracy theories about the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, that killed 26.

Mr Heslin said the opportunity to testify was “long overdue”.

“Confronting Alex Jones for what he said and did to me. To restore my son’s honor and legacy.”

During cross-examination by Jones’ attorney, Antino Reynal, Heslin was asked about his knowledge of the Infowars website and where the conspiracy theory that the Sandy Hook massacre was a hoax came from.

He said Jones was “the one who lit the match and started the fire” while others “brought him wood to keep him going”.

Alex Jones enters the courtroom in front of Scarlett Lewis and Neil Heslin last week

(via REUTERS)

Scarlett Lewis and Neil Heslin in court during Alex Jones’ libel trial

(©GANNETT)

Mr Raynal then asked if Heslin had a vendetta against Jones.

“I have no vendetta,” he replied. “Alex started this fight, I’ll finish this fight.”

Taking the witness box just before the lunch break, Ms Lewis said she first heard about the conspiracy theory shortly after her son was shot in 2012.

She told the court she was shocked when members of the Hells Angels gang turned up at her son’s wake five days after his death.

“Then I found out they were there to keep the calm, which was surreal to me, to make sure there was no disturbance at the climax,” he said.

Ms. Lewis was asked about an edited photo she claimed showed Sandy Hook victims singing at the Super Bowl in 2013, about two months after the school shooting.

“It was deeply disturbing,” he said.

Ms Lewis said she bought a gun for self-defense after a man with a gun showed up at her house one day.

After the lunch break, Jones arrived in court for the afternoon session.

Speaking directly to the Infowars host, Ms Lewis said Sandy Hook was a “harsh truth”.

Mrs Lewis said her son Jesse had led nine children to safety when the gunman’s gun jammed or ran out of bullets, saving their lives.

“To say that Jesse never existed was a farce. I know there are hoaxes out there, but this was an incredibly real event and I experienced it.

“It’s unbelievable that you keep saying it didn’t happen,” he said.

“Do you think I’m an actor?”

He said the fact that a quarter of Americans doubted that Sandy Hook had taken place put all children at risk.

An Infowars clip that Jones had shot as Heslin testified earlier in the day was then played in court.

In it, Jones unfoundedly assumed that Heslin was on the autism spectrum, “slow” and “manipulated by some very bad people.”

After the footage was played, Ms Lewis described it as “horrific”.

Jones is expected to testify later Tuesday.

On Monday, forensic psychiatrist Roy Lubit told the court that both parents suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder after years of death threats and abuse.

Inforwars’ parent company, Free Speech Systems, filed for bankruptcy late last week.



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