The parents of Jesse Lewis, who was murdered at 6 years old in the Sandy Hook massacre, took the stand Tuesday in the trial to determine what damages Alex Jones owes for defamation. Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis said the conspiracy theorist Infowars radio host made their lives "hell," as Heslin put it on the stand, by peddling lies about the elementary school mass shooting, including that it was a faked "false flag" operation and the parents of the young victims were actually actors conspiring with the government in an effort to push extreme gun control. "Jesse was real," Lewis told Jones from the stand in what CNN calls a "remarkable moment" during which she addressed him directly. "I'm a real mom." Jones later said from the stand that he believes Lewis is real and her son really did die, Yahoo News reports.
Heslin and Lewis testified that they have received death threats, and a forensic psychiatrist who examined them testified that Lewis sleeps with a gun, knife, and pepper spray, and won't turn her air conditioner on because she wants to be able to hear if an intruder enters her home. Jones then took the stand himself, saying he "tried to find out what actually happened" on Dec. 14, 2012, because "the internet had a lot of questions" and he did, as well. The judge admonished Jones multiple times for lying on the stand, saying he violated his oath to tell the truth at least two times by testifying he had complied with discovery in the trial when he had not, and that he is bankrupt when he is not. On his radio show prior to testifying, Jones had called the judge "demonically possessed," Forbes reports.
Also on his radio show Tuesday, Jones said of Heslin, "I think Heslin acts like somebody on the spectrum. He is being manipulated by some very bad people." After court proceedings ended Tuesday, Lewis approached Jones to give him a bottle of water because he had complained a torn larynx made it difficult for him to speak, and he then started talking with her and Heslin. They shook hands and Jones tried to apologize to them, but then Heslin asked if he'd also apologize for the autism spectrum comment. The exchange got heated, with Jones at one point saying "Hey, I think I'm autistic too, buddy," and as an attorney for Heslin and Lewis intervened, the lawyer said to Jones while leading them away, "That's not even a thought. That's not the way this goes." Jones yelled back, "Why because you can't feed them fake videos anymore?" (Read more Alex Jones stories.)