The jury in the Sandy Hook defamation suit against Alex Jones is now deliberating on whether to award punitive damages to the parents of victim Jesse Lewis.
Jones was found liable for defamation and “intentional infliction of emotional distress” against Lewis’ parents, Scarlett Lewis and Neil Heslin, in a default judgment earlier this week.
Gamble reminded the jury that in a default judgment against him Jones was already found liable for defamation and “intentional infliction of emotional distress” against Lewis’ parents, Scarlett Lewis and Neil Heslin.
Now the jury must decide if Jones will have to pay punitive damages on top of the more than $100,000 in compensatory damages he was ordered to pay earlier this week.
Punitive damages are meant to punish a defendant and deter future bad behavior and can be awarded in cases of “actual malice” or reckless disregard for the truth.
In his closing argument, Ball said that Jones’ behavior met that criteria and urged the jury to hit Jones with a “substantial” punitive damages award.
“We ask that you send a very very simple message, and that is, stop Alex Jones,” Ball said. “Stop the monetization of misinformation and lies. Please.”
The jury began deliberations Friday afternoon and will continue on Monday.
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