Parents of 6-Year-Old Sandy Hook Victim Say Alex Jones Made Life a ‘Living Hell’

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Often speaking directly to InfoWars host Alex Jones, the mother of a 6-year-old killed in the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre testified that the right-wing conspiracy theorist’s lies that the attack was a hoax left her in fear of her life and aggravated her grief.

“It’s unbearable to have a 6-year-old son shot in front of his class and you don’t think you’re going to survive and then have someone perpetuate a lie on top of that that it was a hoax, that it was a false flag,” said Scarlett Lewis during her testimony. “I don’t think you understand the fear you’re perpetuating, not just for the victim’s family, but for our family, our friends, and every survivor of that school.”

Jesse Lewis, along with 19 of his first-grade classmates and six teachers, were killed after a gunman entered their school in Newtown, Connecticut, on December 14, 2012.

Lewis and Jesse’s father, Neil Heslin, belongs to several Sandy Hook families that have filed lawsuits against Jones arguing that his statements that the attack was a hoax led to years of abuse by his followers. The parents, who both testified on Tuesday, have asked Jones to pay $150 million for defamation and willful infliction of emotional distress.

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“The ripple effect is huge because of the platform you have. And the fear that comes from that stops the healing and grieving process,” Lewis told Jones during her testimony.

Lewis testified that she received death threats and that her family and friends were also harassed by Jones’ followers.

Lewis described an incident where a person pulled into her Connecticut driveway one Christmas morning and began taking photos of her and her home. She said she didn’t feel safe and had to keep a gun in her home for the sake of her surviving son.

“I am a single mother responsible for the safety of both my boys and I was unable to keep one safe so I am going to protect my surviving son,” Lewis said in emotional testimony.

Jones, who portrayed the lawsuit as an attack on his First Amendment rights, also took the stand on Tuesday, telling Lewis and Heslin that he “never intentionally tried to hurt you.”

However, later in his testimony, he said his views on Sandy Hook came from signs he saw it was a “synthetic” event manipulated by outside forces.

He also blamed the “corporate media” several times during his testimony, saying they lie and misrepresent the truths, leading him to question everything.

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Heslin, Jesse’s father, told jurors that the pain of losing his son was compounded by Jones’ claim that he never existed.

“It’s very important to me to have this trial and testimony today to hold Alex Jones accountable,” he said. Statements from both Infowars and Alex Jones have repeatedly tarnished Jesse.”

The crux of the trial is a 2017 episode of “Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly,” in which Heslin appeared and challenged Jones’ denial of the shooting. Heslin says in the episode, “I held my son with a bullet hole through his head.”

Jones and another Infowars host, Owen Shroyer, later suggested that Heslin had lied.

“I can’t even describe the last nine and a half years of a hell of a life that I and others have had to endure because of Alex Jones’ negligence and recklessness.”

Judges in Texas and Connecticut have already issued default sentences against Jones, holding him liable for libel for pushing the Sandy Hook hoax claim. Jones’ trial fell through because he did not respond to court orders and did not hand over documents.

This trial began last week and is being held in Austin, where Jones’s Infowars website and parent company are located.

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“My goal is to hold Alex Jones accountable and be able to walk out of this courthouse very quickly with all this behind me and move on with my life.”

Jones was absent from Heslin’s testimony, going live on his show, making fun of Heslin calling him “slow” and “on the spectrum.” He said the father was “manipulated by some very bad people.”

Lawyers for Lewis and Heslin had admitted a recording of Jones’ comments Tuesday morning as evidence and played before the jury.

Jones will continue his testimony on Wednesday. Unbeknownst to the jury, Jones was admonished by Judge Maya Guerra Gamble for violating orders not to talk about his finances and for giving answers that deviated too far from the questions asked.

“If you come back tomorrow to testify, one more time, no asides,” the judge said. “Answer only the question that is put to you.”

Safia Samee Ali is a reporter for NBC News Digital, based in Chicago.

The post Parents of a 6-year-old Sandy Hook Victim Say Alex Jones Made Life a “Living Hell” appeared first on NBC News.

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