Alex Jones, the host of conspiracy theorists radio, website and media platforms "The Alex Jones Show" and InfoWars, is facing a defamation lawsuit and being sued for damages after falsely accusing a man from Massachusetts as being a suspect in the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting.
Seventeen people were killed and seventeen more were wounded after 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz opened fire in the Parkland, Florida high school on February 14, 2018.
According to court documents, an InfoWars article that was featured on the front page of the website as well as on all social media accounts belonging to InfoWars and Kit Daniels (an employee of InfoWars) wrongly accused Marcel Fontaine as being involved in the mass school shooting.
The InfoWars article underwent several revisions. The article was alternately titled "Reported Florida Shooter Dressed as Communist, Supported ISIS," "Florida Shooter Inspired by ISIS - ALLAHU AKBAR," and "Reported Florida Shooter Discussed 'Allahu Akbar' on Instagram Profile."
The lawsuit states that the multiple iterations of the article, which included a photograph of Marcel Fontaine, conveyed the impression that the photograph depicted the suspected shooter.
Following the publication and endorsement of InfoWars, the photograph of Marcel Fontaine was shared across social media platforms at an exponential rate. The content of the InfoWars article was also republished numerous times, increasing the distribution of the defamatory accusation.
Marcel Fontaine has suffered ridicule, harassment and threats of violence from those who remain convinced he was involved in the Florida shooting, according to court documents.
The lawsuit goes on to state that Alex Jones and InfoWars knew or should have known that their publication of Marcel Fontaine's photograph connecting him with the shooting would cause him to be the subject of harassment, ridicule, and threats.
Alex Jones and InfoWars are no strangers to lawsuits concerning defamation.
Alex Jones garnered significant attention for his slander against the victims of the Sandy Hook massacre, claiming that he has seen "evidence that nobody died there." Jones was also responsible for peddling the "Pizzagate" story, which accused elites in the Democratic party of overseeing a pedophile slave dungeon in the basement of a Washington, D.C. pizzeria.
The week following the "Pizzagate" allegations, an armed man who was a fan of InfoWars fired shots inside the pizzeria as part of a plan to uncover the conspiracy. Under threat of a lawsuit from the owner of the pizzeria, Mr. Jones acknowledged his role in promoting the conspiracy theory and apologized.
Alex Jones also published reckless statements about the church shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas. Mr. Jones claimed the event was "part of the Antifa revolution against Christians and conservatives."
Following his outlandish statements, two conspiracy enthusiasts showed up at the church and yelled violent threats at the pastor. The pastor's 14-year-old daughter was one of the victims killed in the shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs.