Alex Jones’ Connecticut defense lawyer loses radio show over limitations on what he can say about the case on air

HARTFORD, Conn. — A Fairfield County radio station has canceled a talk show hosted by Alex Jones’ Connecticut-based defense lawyer after the lawyer refused to agree to conditions about what he could say about Jones’ recently concluded Sandy Hook defamation trial.

Attorney Norm Pattis said he had hosted a weekday, noon to 2 pm program on WICC AM and FM radio for the past five months or so. He took a leave from the program during the trial, which began in mid-September and ended with a verdict against Jones Wednesday.

The defamation suit against Jones by relatives of Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting victims concluded with an astonishing, $965 million verdict against Jones and for the 14 family members and one first responder who sued him.

Much of the evidence at trial was gripping and usually emotional testimony from family members who described suffering through a decade of harassment and threats from people who believe the phony conspiracy theories about the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre Jones broadcast over his Texas-based radio and internet platforms.

For years, Jones claimed falsely that the school massacre was a hoax and the 20 murdered first graders, six dead educators and the grieving parents, siblings and spouses were actors in a staged event intended to generate support for gun control.

Pattis was scheduled to resume his radio show Friday afternoon, but said the show was canceled after a short discussion about what he could say.

“They wanted to talk about limits about what I could and couldn’t say about Alex Jones,” Pattis said. “I don’t believe in prior restraint. So I said in the event that we can’t agree we should have a backup. And they called and said we love you, let’s talk after the first of the year. We’re not built for controversy.”

“Well if a radio station isn’t built for controversy what is it built for,” Pattis said. “I got canceled.”

An executive with Westport-based Connoisseur Media, which owns the station, responded to an inquiry Friday with a short statement.

“Now that the Alex Jones matter has been handled by the legal system and taking into consideration the upcoming ten-year anniversary of Sandy Hook, we want to be an agent for healing not heartache,” Kristin Okesson said. “Our listeners are hurting and it’s important for us to focus on fostering positivity and to help them rebuild.”

Pattis said he first learned there could be restrictions on what he was permitted to discuss on his show in a text message from a station producer Friday morning.

“Hey Norm, What time do you expect to be here today?,” the text message read. “Based on listener feedback so far from what happened this week we just want to agree on some parameters before you go on the air. We’d like to chat before hand.”

Pattis said he telephoned the producer and was told the station expected he would discuss the case, the legal proceedings and the size of the verdict. Pattis said he would discuss those subjects, but would also comment on his belief that the verdict is a “miscarriage of justice” and his defense of Jones.

“And he says, ‘Well that is what we need to talk about,’ ” Pattis said.

Pattis said he replied that the station should consider arranging for a backup host in the event there was no agreement.

He said his reply in a final text message from the producer:

“Hey Norm—I thought about your text and chatted internally. We feel like given the sensitive nature of the case and the volume of feedback we have received that it’s best to hold off. We aren’t really built to handle controversy—it’s not our expertise, especially given the upcoming ten year anniversary of Sandy Hook in December. Why don’t we revisit at the start of the new year? We are big fans of yours and would love to work it out once everything settles down.”

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This story was originally published October 15, 2022 3:06 PM.