The murder of Seth Rich has taken a strange twist after a private investigator working for the Rich family claiming that the slain DNC staffer may have leaked the organization's emails to WikiLeaks --- a charge that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange appears to be endorsing.
Rich was shot to death in Washington, D.C., last summer in a case that remains unsolved. While police said that his murder was a robbery gone wrong in a neighborhood that had seen a spate of armed robberies, some conspiracy theorists believed that the young Democratic National Committee employee was really killed in retribution for leaking the organization's emails to WikiLeaks. The organization published them over the course of the 2016 presidential campaign, which turned out to be politically damaging to Hillary Clinton.
Now that theory may have some new backing. Rod Wheeler, a private investigator and former Washington investigator, said he believes there is evidence on a laptop used by Seth Rich that he was in contact with WikiLeaks before his death. Wheeler also implied that Washington, D.C., police were stonewalling the investigation.
"The police department nor the FBI have been forthcoming," Wheeler told Fox 5 in Washington. "They haven't been cooperating at all. I believe that the answer to solving his death lies on that computer, which I believe is either at the police department or either at the FBI. I have been told both."Wheeler told the outlet that he had a source confirming that Seth Rich was in contact with WikiLeaks and also said that police were trying to thwart the investigation into his death.
"I have a source inside the police department that has looked at me straight in the eye and said, 'Rod, we were told to stand down on this case and I can't share any information with you.' Now, that is highly unusual for a murder investigation, especially from a police department," he said. "Again, I don't think it comes from the chief's office, but I do believe there is a correlation between the mayor's office and the DNC and that is the information that will come out [Tuesday]."
To add even more intrigue to the story, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange retweeted the story from the Fox 5 Twitter account about Wheeler's allegations.
To many, this seemed to be an endorsement of the theory that Seth Rich was the one who leaked the DNC emails, and it is not the first time that the WikiLeaks founder has hinted at Seth Rich being a source. In an appearance on a Dutch television show (via a transcript published in The Gateway Pundit), Assange suggested that Seth Rich was a "source" for WikiLeaks.
Julian Assange: "Whistleblowers go to significant efforts to get us material and often very significant risks. As a 27-year-old, works for the DNC, was shot in the back, murdered just a few weeks ago for unknown reasons as he was walking down the street in Washington."
Reporter: "That was just a robbery, I believe. Wasn't it?"
Julian Assange: "No. There's no finding. So… I'm suggesting that our sources take risks."The latest story seems to contradict statements from the D.C. police on Seth Rich's murder. In the summer, the Metropolitan Police Department told Business Insider that there was there was "no indication" that Rich's death was the result of his work at the DNC or being an alleged whistleblower. There have also been widespread reports both from IT investigators and U.S. intelligence agencies that the DNC emails were hacked as part of the Russian campaign to interfere with the 2016 presidential election.
There will likely be more of the story to come. Rod Wheeler said he will release more information about the murder of Seth Rich and his apparent connections to WikiLeaks.
[Featured Image by Seth Rich/Facebook]