Alex Jones breaches court order by failing to show for Sandy Hook deposition after judge rebuffed sick claims

Infowars host claimed he was too sick to leave his home to attend Wednesday’s questioning - before his attorney admitted he left home to film his far-right show

Rachel Sharp
Wednesday 23 March 2022 18:32
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<p>Alex Jones failed to show for a deposition on Wednesday </p>

Alex Jones failed to show for a deposition on Wednesday

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Far-right conspiracy theorist Alex Jones has breached a court order by failing to show up for a deposition in a lawsuit over his false claims about the Sandy Hook massacre, after a judge rebuffed claims that he was too sick to appear.

The Infowars host was scheduled to appear in person at 9am local time in Austin, Texas, on Wednesday to be questioned under oath as part of settlement proceedings in defamation cases he lost against the families of victims killed in the 2012 mass shooting.

But, Mr Jones was a no-show, instead sending along one of his attorneys Norm Pattis, who delivered the news that his client would not be making an appearance.

Connecticut Superior Court Judge Barbara Bellis has now ordered Mr Jones to appear for the deposition on Thursday, saying that “he has not submitted additional evidence for the court to evaluate on the issue of his alleged medical conditions”.

The victims’ families have also filed an emergency motion asking the court to arrest the right-wing extremist for civil contempt and bring him to the court to testify if he fails to show up once again.

The defiance of the court order comes after Mr Jones made a last-ditch attempt to delay the questioning this week, claiming he was too sick to leave his home to attend - despite leaving his home to broadcast his live show for four hours.

Kevin Smith, an attorney for the Infowars host, filed a motion on Monday including a seven-sentence letter from an unnamed physician who cited unnamed “medical conditions” that mean Mr Jones “is remaining at home”.

In a court hearing on Tuesday, Judge Bellis turned down the claim and ordered that the deposition go ahead as planned.

The judge suggested that Mr Jones’ legal team “unknowingly misled” the court with its attempts to postpone it over his mystery illness pointing out that, at the very same time that his attorney was arguing he was sick and being seen by a doctor in the hearing, Mr Jones was hosting his Infowars show.

She questioned whether the show was being broadcast from Mr Jones’ home or from his studio - thereby proving if he was or wasn’t staying home.

Judge Bellis also raised doubts about the authenticity of the physician’s letter saying she has “no idea” if it is “genuine” or if the doctor is “currently licensed”.

“It appears to the court unreasonable to suggest that Jones can broadcast live for hours, whether it’s from home, remotely, or from a studio but he cannot sit for a deposition,” she told the court in her ruling.

On Wednesday, Mr Jones’ attorney admitted to the court that the radio host was broadcasting his show live during Tuesday’s court hearing.

He said that the show was broadcast from Mr Jones’ studio in Austin which “is not located in Mr Jones’ home” - casting doubts on the doctor’s letter that he is staying home.

Mr Jones was successfully sued by 10 families of the victims of the Sandy Hook mass shooting after he claimed the massacre of 26 people was a “giant hoax”.

The last case was decided in November, with the victims’ families winning and Mr Jones being found guilty by default as he failed to hand over evidence to the court.

On 14 December 2012, 20-year-old Adam Lanza shot and killed 20 students aged just six and seven years old and six staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, in what remains one of the worst mass shootings in US history.

For years following the shooting, Mr Jones pushed false claims through his radio show and website that the mass shooting never even happened.

He claimed that the massacre was instead a “false flag” operation engineered by the government to bring about stricter gun control laws, was “staged” and “completely fake”, and was carried out by “actors”.

Victims’ families endured harassment and threats from Mr Jones’ followers and memorials to the victims were defaced.

The defamation cases will now go to juries to decide how much Mr Jones must pay to the families in terms of damages and legal fees.

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