Alawyer representing a Sandy Hook family in the defamation damages trial of Alex Jones revealed in court Wednesday that attorneys for the far-right Infowars host shared years worth of his text messages.
Attorney Mark Bankston asked Jones if he was aware that 12 days prior, his lawyers "messed up and sent me an entire digital copy of your entire cell phone with every text message you've sent for the past two years, and when informed, did not take any steps to identify it as privileged or protected in any way?"
Bankston said that these messages "fell free and clear into my possession" as of two days ago and that they proved Jones lied to him when he said that he didn't have any text messages about Sandy Hook. He again asked Jones if he knew that this had happened, and Jones responded that he told Bankston the truth.
"This is your Perry Mason moment," Jones told the lawyer, referring to the television series about the fictional criminal defense lawyer. "I gave [the lawyers] my phone."
Bankston is representing Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, who lost their 6-year-old son, Jesse, in the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting. The parents are seeking $150 million in damages at the Travis County Courthouse in Austin, Texas. Of the sum, $75 million is for damaging their reputation and $75 million is for emotional distress. Both spoke in court on Tuesday about the harassment they said they faced after Jones helped spread the conspiracy theory that the deadly shooting was faked.
Jones has already been found liable for defamation in regard to Sandy Hook by courts in Texas and Connecticut.
A video of the exchange between Bankston and Jones was shared on Twitter Wednesday by user Acyn and had received 3.5 million views by publication time.
When the judge prompted Jones to answer Bankston's question on whether he was aware of what happened with his text messages, he said that he wasn't.
Bankston questioned him further on what he indicated was a disparity between what Jones said about his messages not relating to Sandy Hook and what they actually contained.
"Mr. Jones, in discovery, you were asked, 'Do you have Sandy Hook text messages on your phone,' and you said, 'No,' correct?" Bankston said.
"I was mistaken," Jones replied.
Bankston then asked Jones if he knew what perjury was, saying that he wanted to make sure the defendant knew before they went any further, and Jones responded that he did.
Perjury, according to the Merriam-Webster definition, is "the voluntary violation of an oath or vow either by swearing to what is untrue or by omission to do what has been promised under oath."
"I mean, I'm not a tech guy," Jones said. "I told you I gave—in my testimony—the phone to the lawyers before whatever."
Newsweek reached out to Bankston and F. Andino Reynal, Jones' lawyer, for comment.