Alex Jones, the Austin-based provocateur embroiled in several lawsuits filed by parents of victims of the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, said in a deposition released Friday that his conspiracy thinking was a kind of mental disorder.
Jones, who repeatedly claimed on his internet and radio show InfoWars that the mass shooting in Newtown, Conn., was a hoax, told lawyers he “almost had like a form of psychosis back in the past where I basically thought everything was staged, even though I’m now learning a lot of times things aren’t staged.”
Jones blamed his mental state on “the trauma of the media and the corporations lying so much, then everything begins — you don’t trust anything anymore, kind of like a child whose parents lie to them over and over again, well, pretty soon they don’t know what reality is.”
The admission came toward the end of the three-hour deposition recorded in a downtown Austin law office March 14 in one of several lawsuits brought in Austin, Connecticut and Virginia against Jones by parents of children killed in the shooting. The suits contend that Jones’ repeated claims that the shootings were staged showed a reckless disregard for the truth and for the distress and real harm he was causing the parents, piling torment on their tragedies.
“So long before these lawsuits I said that in the past I thought everything was a conspiracy, and I would kind of get into that mass group think of the communities that were out there saying that,” Jones said. “And so now I see that it’s more in the middle. All right? So that’s where I stand.”
But under questioning by Houston lawyer Mark Bankston, Jones continued to display a fundamentally conspiratorial frame of mind.
The deposition offers a revealing look at Jones’ state of mind at a moment of maximum peril him. Jones has been stripped since summer of major social media platforms for InfoWars because of the content of his posts and playing defense in multiple courtrooms.
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