Alex Jones on trial: Sandy Hook dad and mom testify in regards to the ‘hell’ he left behind

The jury hearing the case will decide how much damages Jones must pay parents Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, who won a default judgment against him earlier this year. An attorney representing Heslin and Lewis asked the jury last week to award Heslin and Lewis $150 million.

Fighting back tears at times, Heslin told the jury that Jones, through his Infowars conspiratorial media organization, “destroyed the honor and the legacy” of his son. Heslin said he “couldn’t even begin to describe the last nine and a half years” he endured because of Jones.

“There has to be a strong deterrent that prevents him from spreading this propaganda,” Heslin said, adding that he wanted, through his testimony, “my credibility, my reputation, and Jesse’s legacy that he deserves restoration.”

As Heslin pointed out, a television screen in court showed a photo of his six-year-old son, Jesse Lewis. Jones, who is expected to testify in his own defense later Tuesday, was absent from the courtroom during Heslin’s testimony and the first part of Lewis’ testimony. Heslin called that absence a “cowardly act”.

“I have been here for a week and a half and [during] my final testimony Mr. Alex Jones does not have the courage to sit in front of me or face me,” Heslin said.

An attorney representing Heslin and Lewis told CNN that the two must be in isolation and under the protection of professional security during the trial.

Heslin also said on the stand that the lie Jones pushed “resonates around the world” and that he realized “how dangerous” it is.

Heslin described repeatedly confronting those who believed Jones over the past decade, saying such interactions “occur to this day.”

“My life is in danger,” Heslin said. “I fear for my life. I fear for my safety and the safety of my family and their lives.”

Lewis also testified in court that she has been harassed and received death threats, including at her own home, all of which she said reopen the wounds of her son’s murder.

“The fear and anxiety and insecurity keep me from healing,” Lewis said. “It definitely has a negative impact on the healing process.”

Lewis described the conspiracy theories about Sandy Hook as “very disturbing”.

“I feel in danger,” Lewis said, describing how she feels about her own personal safety.

Roy Lubit, a forensic psychiatrist who was hired to examine Heslin and Lewis, testified to the court on Monday how scared and concerned for their personal safety the two parents are.

Lubit told the court that Lewis and Heslin are “very scared.” When asked to specify who they are afraid of, Lubit replied, “Some of Jones’ followers are trying to kill them.”

Lubit explained that Lewis sleeps with a gun, a knife, and pepper spray on his nightstand. Lubit also said that she will not turn on the air conditioning even during hot days for fear of not being able to hear an intruder coming to hurt her.

Lewis testified Tuesday that she has a gun to keep her other son safe, telling the jury that she failed to keep one son safe and will do everything in her power to make sure no harm comes to her other child.

Jury selection for a similar trial involving the Jones and Sandy Hook families began Tuesday in Connecticut, where Jones was also found liable for damages earlier this year.

Jones turned away from the ongoing judicial proceedings, claiming without foundation last week that he was being tried in Texas before a “kangaroo court”. Infowars also published material that attacks the judges overseeing the cases in visceral terms.

Jones’ media company, Free Speech Systems, the company that operates Infowars, filed for bankruptcy protection on Friday.

Attorneys representing several Sandy Hook families have accused Jones of draining Free Speech Systems of assets in recent years as part of an effort to protect himself from judgments he may have been ordered to pay.

One of the attorneys, Avi Moshenberg, told CNN on Tuesday that Free Speech Systems’ bankruptcy filing showed that $62 million in assets were withdrawn from the company in 2021 and 2022.

“If you look at the bankruptcy filing, prior to the bankruptcy declaration, Alex Jones, the sole owner [of Free Speech Systems], it took $62 million in taxes in 2021 and 2022,” Moshenberg told CNN. “Just pull up. That’s why the company doesn’t have many assets.”

A lawyer representing Jones did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday morning. But a hearing is scheduled for Wednesday in which W. Marc Schwartz, the chief restructuring officer for Free Speech Systems, is expected to testify.

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