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Conspiracist Says He Was Attacked By Man He Hired To Analyze Seth Rich’s Death

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A conservative activist in suburban Washington, D.C. is recovering from being shot and hit by a car, allegedly by a former Marine he hired to investigate the death of former Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich.

Jack Burkman told The Washington Post that he had hired Kevin Doherty to help him build a psychological profile of Rich’s killer. Local police believe that Rich’s death in 2016 was the result of a botched robbery, but conspiracy theorists believe that Rich was murdered for political purposes. The culprit has not been caught.

Burkman fired Doherty in July 2017 and moved on to investigating the FBI. In February, Burkman was contacted by a man who claimed to have information on then-deputy director Andrew McCabe. Burkman said his source promised to drop off a full report under a cone in the parking garage of a local hotel.

But, Burkman said, when he bent over to pick them up, he was shot in the buttocks and thigh, and then hit by an SUV.

“It looked like he was coming to kill me,” Burkman said. He was hospitalized for three days. Police tracked Doherty down via the SUV and charged him on Saturday with malicious wounding and use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.

Burkman was also sprayed with pepper spray by a masked man in January, an incident that Burkman didn’t connect to Doherty at the time. No charges have been filed in that incident.

Coincidentally, the alleged attack took place soon after Rich’s parents sued Fox News for having “intentionally exploited” falsehoods and conspiracy theories about his death. The network had claimed to have information that Rich leaked information to Wikileaks, before retracting its report.

“This in my mind makes the whole Seth story stranger and stranger,” Burkman said.

Contact Aiden Pink at or on Twitter, @aidenpink


Aiden Pink

Aiden Pink

Aiden Pink is the Deputy News Editor for the Forward. Contact him at or on Twitter, @aidenpink.

Lobbyist Attacked By Man Hired To Investigate Seth Rich

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Conspiracist Says He Was Attacked By Man He Hired To Analyze Seth Rich’s Death

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