Alex Jones is really having a tough time in court. He has had some bad days during his defamation trial, but Wednesday was probably the worst. He finally took the stand himself. He testified that he had never texted about the Sandy Hook shooting. Mr., Jones told the jury that he did not use email and that he had searched his phone for any text messages that might have addressed the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting.
But, it turns out his lawyer had inadvertently produced all of Jone’ text messages for years. Andino Reynal just produced those phone records 12 days ago. Among those years of messages was one in which one of his producers warned him that his coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic contained falsehoods similar to those regarding the Sandy Hook shooting. The parents’ attorney told Jones sitting there on the stand that his attorney inadvertently sent him Jones’ entire phone. Mr. Reynal objected. The Judge then cautioned the jury that no text message has been shown. She also mentioned that any such text messages should have been produced months ago.
No text message was shown in court. So, this does not quite count as a gotcha moment, but it does come close. For a jury that is likely already leaning toward the plaintiffs, this may be enough.
Later, Mark Bankston, the parents’ attorney, explained to reporters that Reynal’s firm provided the documents on a file-sharing platform. In accordance with ethical rules, Bankston notified Reynal’s firm that they produced erroneous documents. That started a ten day period in which Reynal’s firm could have notified Bankston’s firm that some improper documents were provided and need to be returned. But, Reynal’s firm did not request that any documents be returned. At that point, the documents then belonged to Bankston’s firm. Mr. Bankston and his firm started reviewing all the records. Mr. Bankston said they were still reviewing those thousands of pages of documents.
Mr. Bankston said he would not disclose any personal messages or information. But, if the Jan. 6 committee desired any text messages, he would cooperate. See San Antonio Express News report here for more information. This oversight appears to amount to a major error by Mr. Jones’ attorney. But, the horse is out of the barn, now.