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Words ‘still live on’ for this Sandy Hook survivor after $49.3 million total Alex Jones verdict

Newtown-Shooting-Infowars
Briana Sanchez / AP
/
Pool Austin American-Statesman
Alex Jones talks to media during a midday break during the trial at the Travis County Courthouse in Austin, Texas, Tuesday, July 26, 2022. An attorney for the parents of one of the children who were killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting told jurors that Jones repeatedly “lied and attacked the parents of murdered children” when he told his Infowars audience that the 2012 attack was a hoax. Attorney Mark Bankston said during his opening statement to determine damages against Jones that Jones created a “massive campaign of lies” and recruited “wild extremists from the fringes of the internet ... who were as cruel as Mr. Jones wanted them to be" to the victims' families. Jones later blasted the case, calling it a “show trial” and an assault on the First Amendment.

Alex Jones now owes the family of a child that was killed in the 2012 Newtown school shooting more than $45 million dollars in damages, in addition to the $4.1 million in compensatory damages ordered earlier this week.

On Friday, a Texas jury ordered InfoWars host Alex Jones to pay $45.2 million in punitive damages to the parents of Jesse Lewis for all of the times he said the Sandy Hook school shooting didn’t happen. Jones has since apologized and admitted the shooting was ‘100% real’, but one survivor says she has mixed feelings after learning the outcome.

“We are so happy that the Lewis’s are receiving that money, but nobody will ever forgive Alex Jones for what he’s done,” said Jordan Gomes, who was in fourth grade on Dec. 14, 2012 when a shooter killed 20 children and six educators at her school in Newtown, Conn.

While the award to Scarlett Lewis and Neil Heslin is “well-deserved” and “long overdue”, according to Gomes, she feels Jones couldn’t pay enough for all he’s done to invalidate a traumatic experience.

“There can never be an adequate price paid for the emotional toll his actions took on the families of Sandy Hook ever,” Gomes said. “To me, there’s not enough money in the world to fix what he’s done and I think many people in the community feel that as well.”

Jones' lawyers had argued for a punitive amount of less than $300,000 in Texas, saying that he had already learned his lesson.

Still, in some ways, Gomes said the damages the jury ordered Jones to pay feels like ‘too little, too late’ for her community of survivors.

“All I can think about is the effect that he has had and he will continue to have," she said, "because no matter what he says now, his legacy and his words will still live on, and people will still believe them regardless."

A separate trial is scheduled to begin next month to determine how much Jones owes families and a first responder suing him in Connecticut.

This story contains information from Associated Press. 

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