Washington lobbyist and lawyer Jack Burkman has been unable to entice witnesses to Seth Rich’s murder with his near-million dollar reward for information. So he’s suing the DC police department to force them to open their investigation to the public.
Burkman, who is also a political consultant and conservative radio show host, became involved in Rich’s case just days after the former DNC data director was gunned down outside his apartment on DC’s north side. Police say it was an aborted robbery.
He offered a $100,000 reward for information leading to the capture of Rich’s killer, or information that could confirm or debunk the conspiracy theories that swirled in the wake of Rich’s death. In late May, Burkman said he was upping the award to nearly a million, according to a press release.
Burkman also has students from George Washington University’s Student Association for Forensic Psychology working on the case in their spare time.
Now, according to a complaint filed in against the Washington, D.C. , Metropolitan Police on Wednesday, Burkman says things are moving too slowly, and it’s time the police release information they have on Rich’s murder.
“The release of this crucial material will help bring peace to the victim’s family, and it will help to either confirm or refute the various theories that swirl about this important murder case,” the complaint says.
But like others who claim to be interested in just “helping” Rich’s family, like private investigator Rod Wheeler, notorious hacker Kim Dotcom, and Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, Burkman has an ulterior motive.
During the 2016 campaign, Burkman was an outspoken critic of Donald Trump and encouraged Republicans to abandon the then-New York real estate developer in his quest for the White House. Since September, Burkman has been trying to tie Rich’s death to “Russian operatives” who sought to derail Hillary Clinton’s bid for the presidency.
Burkman has also claimed that an anonymous source had tipped him off to Rich’s involvement in a scheme to leak the contents of a DNC server and damage the party. “I was approached by a guy who styles himself as a former U.S. intel officer,” Burkman told local media back in March. “I quizzed him. I think he’s credible—you never know the motive of people. But what he said is basically this: that Seth discovered that the Russians had been hacking and therefore the Russian government did away with Seth.”
Burkman—like Wheeler, Dotcom and Assange, who claim that Seth was murdered by Clinton allies over the same hack—has yet to provide any evidence to back up his conspiracy theory, and so far, both assertions appear to be without merit.
The DC police tell Heat Street that the Rich investigation continues, but they will not reveal details to the press or public at this time. They did not have comment on the lawsuit.