April 17 (UPI) — Two families of children killed in the December 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn., are suing radio talk show host Alex Jones for defamation.
The families are both seeking more than $1 million from Jones and his companies, which include his Texas-based media company Infowars and Free Speech Systems LLC. In the lawsuit, the families allege Jones called the parents “crisis actors” and that Florida resident Lucy Richards agreed so strongly with Jones’ claim that the Sandy Hook massacre was a hoax that she made death threats against a victim’s family.
On Dec. 14, 2012,, Adam Lanza killed his mother, 20 first graders, and six school employees at Sandy Hook Elementary, before killing himself. Jones is a conservative radio host who has claimed the Sandy Hook shooting never happened.
Both suits — submitted by Neil Heslin and by Leonard Pozner and Veronique De La Rosa — were filed Monday in Travis County, Texas. Their sons, Noah Pozner, 6, and Jesse Heslin, 6, were both killed in the Sandy Hook shooting.
“This conspiracy theory, which has been pushed by InfoWars and Mr. Jones since the day of the shooting, alleges that the Sandy Hook massacre did not happen, or that it was staged by the government and concealed using actors, and that the parents of the victims are participants in a horrifying cover-up,” the Heslin suit states.
The Heslin lawsuit also names Infowars reporter Owen Shroyer as a defendant. It says Shroyer falsely claimed that Neil Heslin lied during a NBC News interview with Megyn Kelly about holding his dead son’s body.
The Pozner and De La Rosa suit alleges that Jones falsely claimed that an interview De La Rosa gave to CNN’s Anderson Cooper was fake.
The two lawsuits represent the first civil action parents have taken against Jones for defamation, the New York Times reported.