by Sharon Rondeau

(Jun. 2, 2017) — A petition launched on May 19 requesting the White House to appoint a special prosecutor for an unsolved murder case has reached over 45,000 signatures as of Friday.

The petition follows renewed interest in the case of former DNC staffer Seth Rich, who was shot twice in the street outside of his Washington, DC home last July 10 and later died at an area hospital.

The police have released very little information about any ongoing investigation and on Wednesday were named as defendants in a lawsuit by an outside lobbyist and investigator, Jack Burkman, who has offered $105,000 from his personal funds to anyone providing information leading to the killer(s).

Other rewards have been offered by One America News Network (OANN) at $100,000; $20,000 by filmmaker and author Mike Cernovich; $20,000 from the open-government organization WikiLeaks; $25,000 by the DC Metro Police Department; and $100,000 by businessman Martin Shkreli.

No one has yet come forward with any information.

However, on May 20, Internet entrepreneur and gamer Kim Dotcom said on Twitter that he possesses evidence showing that Rich was the source of thousands of DNC emails provided to WikiLeaks, which began releasing them in batches on July 22, just 12 days after Rich lost his life.

Without saying his name, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has strongly implied that Rich was a source. Dotcom said definitively that he “knows” Rich was a WikiLeaks source.

Dotcom’s claim appears to intersect with a report by former DC homicide detective Rod Wheeler, who was privately employed by the Rich family to investigate their son’s death separately. On May 15, the case was catapulted to national attention when Wheeler claimed on a DC Fox affiliate that he knew of evidence demonstrating that Rich had been in communication with Wikileaks via his computer.

Wheeler later clarified his claim to say that he received the information about Rich having communicated with WikiLeaks from a Fox News reporter, who had received it from a “federal investigator.”

Although Rich was employed at the DNC for two years and in charge of a voter-registration expansion project, the DNC has not offered a reward for information nor made any public statements given the intense interest in the case.  Many now speculate that Rich might have been killed in a situation other than a “botched robbery,” as the police have maintained.

Wheeler said in his Fox5 interview that he suspects that the police investigation of the murder has been stymied out of political considerations involving DC Mayor Muriel Bowser and individuals within the DC Metro PD.  Bowser has reportedly denied the claim.

Wheeler later told Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity that former DNC Acting Chairman Donna Brazile was in contact with the Metro PD and the Rich family after discovering that Wheeler was looking into the case, a development which Wheeler found curious.

Petitions posted at whitehouse.gov are allowed 30 days to collect 100,000 signatures in order for the administration to provide an official response. The deadline for the Rich petition is June 18.

On Friday, Robert Herring of OANN contacted Dotcom for an interview.

Hannity has also invited Dotcom to guest-host his radio show.  While he planned to have Dotcom as a guest on his FNC program, the plan was reportedly quashed by Hannity’s producers.

To an outlet, the mainstream media has attempted to ridicule anyone investigating the case, other than the Metro PD, as a conspiracy theorist.

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