Fox News Cleared in Lawsuit Over Falsely Linking Man to Neo-Nazi Killer


The Texas man who was misidentified by several media outlets as a neo-Nazi mass shooter has voluntarily dismissed his claims against Fox News, admitting the network should not have been included in the lawsuit.

Fox News would be compensated “for its trouble,” said Mark Bankston, the lawyer of plaintiff Mauricio Garcia, on Thursday. The case will continue against eight remaining defendants, however, including Newsmax, Univision, and right-wing provocateurs Stephen Crowder and Owen Shroyer.

Texas native Garcia, 36, was erroneously identified last year by some outlets and podcasts as the killer of the same name who opened fire on an Allex, TX outlet mall, killing eight people. After the shooter was found to have shared white supremacist beliefs online and had Nazi SS and swastika tattoos, an old mugshot of the plaintiff was shared by conservative media outlets and pundits using it to sow doubt about the deceased suspect’s extremist and racist motivations.

In the complaint filed earlier this spring, Fox News was initially accused of publishing a story that included a photo falsely identifying Garcia as the shooter. “Fox News Network, LLC refused to publish a retraction within 30 days,” the complaint claimed at the time. “Indeed, no retraction has ever been published. Fox completely ignored Plaintiff and never responded.”

Bankston, who is best known for representing two Sandy Hook parents who successfully sued far-right conspiracist Alex Jones for defamation, is now acknowledging that the conservative cable giant was a “victim of a fabrication” and did not use his client’s image.

“I acknowledge the lawsuit should never have been filed against Fox News, and we are compensating Fox News for its trouble in defending against this claim. In turn, Fox News is foregoing pursuing sanctions,” Bankston wrote in a statement shared with The Daily Beast. “Contrary to my prior public statements, Fox News did not ignore basic journalistic precautions and did have proper institutional guardrails in place with respect to its coverage of the Allen, TX shooting.”

In a series of posts on X, Bankston elaborated: “I’ve decided to pay for the time spent by the attorneys in Texas because it’s the right thing to do. Lawyers shouldn’t have to work when they don’t need to. And I thank Fox’s attorney in Texas for helping us figure out what happened here.” He added: “We will continue to prosecute the case against the remaining defendants, including Newsmax, Univision, Stephen Crowder, Owen Shroyer, and more.”

In the wake of the Allen shooting, a number of MAGA figures and edgelord billionaire Elon Musk outright dismissed law enforcement’s findings about the killer’s neo-Nazi beliefs, labeling it nothing more than a “psyop.” Specifically, they pointed to the false photos of the wrong Garcia, noting his Hispanic heritage to claim the mainstream media “manufactured” the white supremacist narrative about the shooting.

“Look: this is not a white supremacist,” Newsmax host Greg Kelly said while displaying the inaccurate photo during his primetime broadcast. Kelly and the right-wing network would later issue a semi-apology and an on-air correction for peddling the erroneous photo. Garcia is seeking at least $1 million from the various defendants in his lawsuit.

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