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Fox News, Far-Right Podcasters Slapped With A Lawsuit For Linking Wrong Man To Neo-Nazi Shooting

Fox News, Newsmax and a number of far right influencers which includes Tim Pool and Steven Crowder have been named in a lawsuit which alleged that a wrong man was erroneously depicted as a shooter and a white supremacist.

On May 6, 2023, Mauricio Martinez Garcia, 33, opened indiscriminate fire with an automatic weapon which resulted in the death of five adults and three children while injuring seven others. The shooter who wore a jacket with a “Right Wing Death Squad” patch and had swastika and Nazi SS tattoos was later shot and killed by Police.

Mauricio Garcia, a 36-year-old man from Texas, was surprised to see his pictures plastered online and during news broadcasts last May as the man who went on a shooting spree in an Allen outlet mall. His pictures which were displayed by the media outlets sourced from a mugshot site and was widely shared on social media. An attempt was made to label the narrative that the shooter was a far-right extremist and neo-Nazi.

 Garcia is not only suing the cable and broadcast networks in a lawsuit filed last month in Texas but he has also named celebrity blog Hollywood Unlocked, right-wing podcast hosts Steven Crowder and Tim Pool, political media gadfly Simon Ateba, and Infowars host Owen Shroyer as defendants.

Right-wing podcast hosts Steven Crowder and Tim Pool who hosts Timcast podcast shared a picture of the plaintiff and claimed that the gunman was not a white supremacistbut was a part of the government-run misinformation campaign. Timcast reporter Josie Glabach repeated the same story. He added that Aric Toler who uncovered the social-media activity of the shooter was a CIA agent. The story also got the approval of Elon Musk who said that the gunman’s identity was a lie.

Right-wing podcast host Steven Crowder also echoed similar views. Incidentally, Steven Crowder had served a jail sentence for his role in the Insurrection and also questioned the neo-Nazi white supremacist story line. Crowder also aired the picture of the plaintiff as the gunman.

Newsmax hosts Eric Bolling and Greg Kelly,also extensively shared the plaintiff’s images as the shooter and also hinted that looking at the shooter’s heritage he cannot be motivated by white nationalism. He also linked the plaintiff to a gang.

Fox News also is indicted of publishing the erroneous photo in an online article and not issuing a retraction within 30 days.

The lawsuit alleged,

“In their haste to cash in on the eagerness of viewers and readers to learn the identity of the May 6, 2023 mass shooter at the outlet mall in Allen, Texas, several media organizations recklessly disregarded basic journalistic safeguards and published the photo of an innocent man, branding him as a neo-Nazi murderer to his local community and the nation at large,”.

Attorney Greg Adler and Mark Bankston who had gained fame for successfully representing Sandy Hook parents in their defamation case against Infowars conspiracy theorist Alex Jones will represent Garcia. Attorney Greg Adler and Mark Bankston are also representing a 22-year-old Jewish student who is suing X owner Elon Musk who had falsely implicated him in a neo-Nazi riot.

Bankston in a statement on social media said that the media outlets threw caution to the wind and without verifying had portrayed the plaintiff as a neo-Nazi mass murderer. Worse, the news outlets did not publish a rejoinder expressing regret for the incident even after 30 days. They also did not respond to numerous attempts by his client to contact them and have his name cleared.

Garcia is asking for at least $1 million in his libel lawsuit.

Manoj Nair

Manoj Nair: With a decade of news writing across various media platforms, Manoj is a seasoned professional. His dual role as an English teacher underscores his command over communication. He adeptly covers Politics, Technology, Crypto, and more, reflecting a broad and insightful perspective that engages and informs diverse audiences.

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