A Massachusetts man is suing Alex Jones, InfoWars and an InfoWars reporter for more than $1 million after they falsely accused him of being the Parkland shooter in February.
The Daily Beast reported Monday that Marcel Fontaine, the "commie" accused by InfoWars reporter Kit Daniels of being a suspect in the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School mass shooting on Valentine's Day, is suing the company and the individual reporter for defamation.
In both a tweet from InfoWars' Twitter account and the article written by Daniels, Fontaine was identified as a suspect in the shooting. In the photo of him that accompanied the claim, the Massachusetts man, who was seen wearing a popular shirt from independent t-shirt brand Threadless featuring Karl Marx with a lampshade on his head, was described as wearing "communist garb."
The Beast noted that in his suit, Fontaine claimed that his reputation has been "irreparably tainted" and that he is still the recipient of "ridicule, harassment, and threats of violence" from InfoWars readers who believe the article, which still hasn't been taken down. The Massachusetts man also noted that when he requested a correction, InfoWars didn't respond.
Along with the complaints about the conspiracy theory he was at the center of, Fontaine's suit also reportedly contains a detailed history of InfoWars' false claims about mass shooters — an inclusion First Amendment litigator Ken White told the Beast could cause it to be thrown out in Texas, where it was brought.
"The core of the lawsuit—that InfoWars falsely accused Mr. Fontaine of being the shooter—states a very plausible claim for defamation and intentional infliction of emotional distress,” White said. “The problem is that the complaint buries that core wrong into a general attack on InfoWars and Alex Jones and their fans.”
He went on to note that Texas has strong laws barring "strategic lawsuits against public participation," also known as "SLAPP."