WATERBURY, Conn. (AP) — The sister of the teacher killed in the 2012 Sandy Hook massacre and the FBI agent who responded to the school shooting were accused Tuesday of being crisis response officers. I described what it was like and was overwhelmed with emotions. According to conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and others.
Carly Soto Parisi and FBI agent William Aldenberg decide how much Jones should pay for spreading the lie that 20 first graders died in Newtown in 2012 and six school workers died. He was the first witness to testify at the trial when the Connecticut jury began hearing evidence. It didn’t happen.
Soto Parisi said she was hunted down by people who believed she was acting, even after moving to Connecticut and North Carolina. Posting pictures of the grieving woman online, including an Associated Press photo of a distraught Soto Parisi, he said they were the same actor.
“On all social media, I received threatening emails and messages frequently,” she testified, sometimes crying. I spoke to the Connecticut police, and her husband ended up speaking to the North Carolina police.
Aldenberg also broke down when he explained that he was one of the first law enforcement officers to enter two classrooms where 20 children had died. He explained that he saw her phone next to her body in Vicky Soto lit up with messages from people trying to reach her.
“Were the things you saw at that school fake?” asked the plaintiff’s attorney, Attorney Christopher Mattei.
“No,” Aldenberg said. “It sucks. It sucks.”
He also testified that he and others in the community and law enforcement were targeted with threats and conspiracy theories, including claiming he was an actor impersonating the victim’s father.
“It’s one of the worst things that ever happened. If not the worst thing that happened here, it happened to them,” Aldenberg said. “And do people want to say this didn’t happen? And do they want to get rich out of it? That’s the worst part.”
The trial in Waterbury, less than 20 miles (32 km) from Newtown, involved more than a dozen family members of the victim, including his father, David Wheeler, whom conspiracy theorists claimed was the same person as Aldenberg. attended. Wheeler nodded when Aldenberg apologized for what Wheeler had to endure because of the resemblance.
Jones did not attend Tuesday’s trial. He is scheduled to appear in court next week. Jones and his Infowars brand are based in Austin, Texas.
Sandy Hook’s family and Aldenberg have been confronted and harassed for years by those who believe Jones’ false claim that the shooting was staged by crisis managers as part of a plan to take people’s guns. It says it came.
Some say a stranger videotaped them and their surviving children. There are also families who moved from Newtown to avoid harassment. They accuse Jones of causing them emotional and psychological harm.
Aldenberg said, “You can say anything about me. I don’t care.” “Just say what you want to say. I’m a damn big boy. I can take it. But they want to make a profit. They want to destroy people’s lives. They The children of the United States were slaughtered, I’ve seen it myself, and now they need to sit here and hear me say this.
It is the second such trial for Jones, who last month was ordered by a jury in Texas to pay nearly $50 million to the parents of one of the murdered children. Jones did not attend Tuesday’s trial, and he is expected to attend next week.
A jury of three men and three women and several deputies will determine how much money Jones owes to the eight victims and Aldenberg’s relatives. Judge Barbara Bellis ruled last year that Jones was liable for damages without trial after failing to file papers with her family’s attorneys.
A judge also sanctioned Jones on Tuesday for failing to turn over analytical data related to the popularity of his website and his show. He said it would not be permissible to claim that he did not profit from Hooke’s remarks.
In the opening statement, Jones was described by Mattei as a bully and a town square weirdo who should be ignored by his own lawyers.
Mattei showed jurors data showing how the audience increased when Jones spread lies about the shooting. He also showed them pictures and videos of what Jones said and told the panel that from their own life experiences, they already had the tools to decide what to do in this case.
“What your parents taught you, what your grandparents taught you, to know the difference between right and wrong, to know the difference between the truth and a terrible lie, to prey on helpless people. “Know the importance of confronting bullies. Know that you can never stop a bully unless you profit from them and stop the bully,” he said. “And when it comes to stopping Alex Jones, that’s going to be the most important job you do.”
Jones’ attorney, Norm Pattis, claims his client has supported numerous conspiracy theories over the years, and he has constitutional rights.
“At what point do we consider him a green weirdo in the village, someone we can leave if we choose?” he asked.
Pattis told the jury that Jones was liable for the damages, but that any award should be minimized, and that the family had exaggerated the damage Jones had caused them.
On his Infowars web show Tuesday, Jones portrayed himself as a victim of an unfair show trial.
“How do I handle it? We are at war. This is complete tyranny,” he said. “I will tell you this, we can appeal this for years. We can beat this.”
The trial, which will last about a month, is expected to bring testimony from more victims’ relatives. Pattis said Jones would also testify.
Jones now says he believes the shooting was real. At trial in Texas, he testified that he realized his remarks were irresponsible and hurt people’s feelings, and apologized. He sees the lawsuit as an effort to silence him and put him out of business.
Jones’ attorneys say he intends to appeal the sentence against him in Texas. Jones also faces a third trial back in Texas, including the parents of another murdered child.
Associated Press writer Pat Eaton Robb contributed to this article from Hartford, Connecticut.