While presiding Judge Barbara Bellis did not say how Jones might be sanctioned, she alluded to the possibility of arrest on Wednesday.
Infowars host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones has for the second day in a row defied a Connecticut judge’s order for deposition in a lawsuit filed by the relatives of Sandy Hook victims.
As LegalReader.com has reported before, Jones is facing a long-running defamation lawsuit, brought by Sandy Hook families after the Infowars host suggested that the mass shooting was staged in an attempt to take away Americans’ Second Amendment rights.
Jones was scheduled to be deposed on both Wednesday and Thursday in Austin, Texas.
However, Jones missed his Wednesday deposition, citing vague medical concerns. When asked whether he would be in court on Thursday, an attorney for the conspiracy theorist said the decision would be made by Jones’s doctors.
Norman Pattis, an attorney for Jones, said that his client is simply following his doctors’ advice.
“Mr. Jones was given conflicting imperatives: his physician told him to stay home; a judge told him to go to a deposition,” Pattis said in an email to The Associated Press. “He is following his doctor’s advice. I suspect most people would do as Mr. Jones has done.”
However, Connecticut-based Judge Barbara Bellis had already denied Jones’s request for delayed proceedings, ordering the Infowars host to appear on Thursday.
While Bellis indicated that she may not have the legal authority, she asked lawyers to consider whether Jones could be arrested.
Bellis, adds The Associated Press, was quick to note that letters from Jones’s doctors did not suggest that his medical complaints were so serious he could not be deposed. A note from one of his physicians simply said that she had examined Jones for “acute medical issues that were time-sensitive and potentially serious,” and had advised him to submit samples to a laboratory for testing.
Bellis also observed that Jones was not hospitalized and had appeared on Infowars earlier this week.
An attorney for the Sandy Hook families said on Wednesday that Jones’s failure to appear in court that day was a clear act of cowardice.
“This, in our view, was a cowardly display intended to cheat the plaintiffs of their right to put him under oath,” attorney Christopher Mattei said, “and ask him questions about why over the course of many years he lied about them, he lied about the loved ones that they lost at Sandy Hook and why he unleashed a barrage of harassment over many years that continues to this day.”
Bellis has already found Jones liable for damages; a trial scheduled for later this year shall determine what amount, if any, he should pay Sandy Hook families in recompense.