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More Sandy Hook families, FBI agent file lawsuit against Infowars’ Alex Jones

In this Monday, April 17, 2017 photo, “Infowars” host Alex Jones, right, arrives at the Travis County Courthouse in Austin, Texas. (Tamir Kalifa / Associated Press)
In this Monday, April 17, 2017 photo, “Infowars” host Alex Jones, right, arrives at the Travis County Courthouse in Austin, Texas. (Tamir Kalifa / Associated Press)
By Dave Altimari Hartford Courant

HARTFORD, Conn. – An active FBI agent who responded to the Sandy Hook Elementary School during the December 2012 school shooting is joining a group of families of children killed inside the school in suing controversial talk show host Alex Jones for claiming the shooting was a hoax.

The defamation lawsuit filed in Connecticut Wednesday mirrors one filed by the families of two other Sandy Hook victims in Texas in April.

The plaintiffs in the new lawsuit are the parents of four children killed at the Newtown school – Jacqueline and Mark Barden, parents of Daniel; Nicole and Ian Hockley, parents of Dylan; Francine and David Wheeler, parents of Ben; and Jennifer Hensel and Jeremy Richman, parents of Avielle – as well as relatives of first-grade teacher Victoria Leigh Soto and Erica Lafferty-Garbatini, the daughter of slain Sandy Hook Elementary School Principal Dawn Hochsprung.

William Aldenberg, a longtime FBI agent and first responder to the scene, is also a plaintiff.

The lawsuit alleges a yearslong campaign of “abusive and outrageous false statements in which Jones and the other defendants have developed, amplified and perpetuated claims that the Sandy Hook massacre was staged and that the 26 families who lost loved ones that day are paid actors who faked their relatives’ deaths,” the suit said.

“While the nation recoiled at the terrible reality of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Alex Jones saw an opportunity,” said attorney Josh Koskoff, who is representing the families.

“He went on a sustained attack that has lasted for years, accusing shattered family members of being actors, stating as fact that the shooting itself was a hoax and inciting others to act on these malicious lies,” Koskoff said in a press release. “He knew his claims were false but he made them anyway to further a simple but pathetic goal: to make money by tearing away at the families’ pain. This lawsuit seeks to hold Alex Jones and his financial network accountable for those disgraceful actions.”

Adam Lanza shot his way into the Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14, 2012, and killed 26 people, including 20 first-graders, before killing himself. He had killed his mother, Nancy Lanza, in her bed before driving the short distance to the school.

Most of the children who died were in substitute teacher Lauren Rousseau’s classroom where 14 out of 15 children were killed. Five children died in Soto’s classroom, where Lanza eventually killed himself.

Lanza’s gun apparently jammed and he stopped firing briefly to reload it. Police also believe Jesse Lewis told some of his classmates to run while Lanza reloaded.

Jones had said on his radio show the day the previous lawsuit was filed that the Sandy Hook victims are being manipulated by Democrats and those who want to destroy the Second Amendment.

“I ask the families of Sandy Hook victims to actually admit that I have invited you on for years and admit that I have said for years that it really happened, and if I have caused you any pain by debating both sides of it I am sorry for your pain, but this is a big public event that has been seized on politically to take our rights,” Jones said.

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