While the nation remains captivated by the presidential campaign, DC politicos and government officials across the East Coast are grappling with a string of high-profile and mysterious deaths, some of which remain unsolved.
The unsettling events have given way to a host of Internet conspiracy theories, with denizens of Reddit and social media platforms trying to connect the deaths. Popular theories include an underground Hillary Clinton-authorized murder spree, a bizarre United Nations plot to hide evidence of global involvement in American political affairs, and, occasionally, a connection to the oncoming apocalypse.
Of course, unless Clinton is far more capable of handling a multi-national scheme than she appears, it’s likely the Internet is simply letting its imagination run wild. But see if you aren’t a little unnerved by this list of six strange deaths that have taken place on the eastern seaboard.
1. Molly Macauley: The world-renowned “space economist” Molly Macauly was brutally murdered while walking her two dogs around the corner from her Baltimore home. The assailant attacked Macauley and left her for dead in upscale Roland Park —it was the first murder there since 1998. Police say they have no suspects and no leads, though Twitter is convinced that authorities downplayed the murder because it happened during the height of the #BlackLivesMatter-related unrest.
2. John Ashe: The former President of the UN General Assembly was awaiting trial on bribery charges when he turned up dead in June, apparently having crushed his own windpipe while lifting weights in his home. According to theories floating around on the web, Ashe was “scheduled to testify against the Clinton family” when he met his untimely end. There isn’t much independent confirmation for his testimony appointment, but Ashe was part of a scheme to funnel foreign money to the Democratic National Committee during the Clinton years.
3. Victor Thorne: Thorne was, himself, a conspiracy theorist (and a Holocaust denier), but his suicide from a self-inflicted gunshot wound drew attention from political media because his latest project – a forthcoming book – was reportedly a treasure trove of Hillary Clinton opposition research.
4. Seth Rich: The DNC staffer was attacked near DC’s up-and-coming Bloomingdale neighborhood three weeks ago. DC police say they still have no clues or leads in what they say was a random killing, likely part of a burglary attempt. But while Rich was beaten, shot and killed, he wasn’t robbed; he still had his wallet, watch and phone when police discovered his body. Reddit, which has been “investigating” Rich’s death, is convinced that Rich was pushed to pass internal email to Wikileaks, resulting in the document dump that forced Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s resignation.
5. Joe Montano: An aide to Democratic Vice Presidential nominee Tim Kaine died of an apparent heart attack in his Falls Church, Va., home in late July. Montano, who was close to Kaine and had been employed by him for several years, was working for the Democratic National Committee when he died. Eagle-eyed conspiracy theorists immediately connected his death to Rich’s, even though Montano reportedly passed away from a medical event.
6. Shawn Lucas: Lucas, the lead attorney and process server in fraud case against the DNC filed by Bernie Sanders supporters, was found dead on his bathroom floor just this past week. Lucas’s death is strange, as he was reportedly in good health, according to his girlfriend. He had just appeared in a viral video showing the moment he surprised DNC officials with the fraud allegations. Theorists have linked his death to a massive “cover-up” on the part of the Clinton campaign, but they don’t offer much, aside from speculation, to tie the deaths together.
Obviously, the Internet has a lot of time on its hands. But given the air of mystery that surrounds the Clinton family, stemming from events in the 1990s and the anxiety of the 2016 Presidential campaign, with many believing the Clintons would do anything to retake the White House, plenty of rank-and-file folks are trying to connect the dots.
Most of the theories are purely conjecture, some are complete fantasy. The DNC’s leaked emails show an organization barely able to manage a complicated telephone network, let alone a multinational squad of expert killers. But that won’t stop the Internet from considering the possibility.