The parents of slain Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich asked conservative media outlets and personalities to stop peddling “discredited conspiracy theories” about their son’s death in an emotional Washington Post op-ed Tuesday.
Mary and Joel Rich described the aftermath of their son’s death as a “nightmare that you can never wake up from.”
“Imagine that every single day, with every phone call you hope that it’s the police, calling to tell you that there has been a break in the case,” they wrote. “Imagine that instead, every call that comes in is a reporter asking what you think of a series of lies or conspiracies about the death. That nightmare is what our family goes through every day.”
Seth Rich was gunned down in July 2016 in the streets of Washington, DC. At the time, his parents wrote, he was considering accepting a job working on former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.
No motive has been officially determined — though authorities believe he was the victim of a botched robbery — and some right-leaning media outlets and personalities have latched onto the theory that Rich was killed after providing internal DNC emails to WikiLeaks. Some outlets have implied that the DNC played a role in orchestrating Rich’s death.
“Seth’s death has been turned into a political football,” Rich’s parents wrote in their op-ed. “Every day we wake up to new headlines, new lies, new factual errors, new people approaching us to take advantage of us and Seth’s legacy.”
They continued: “With every conspiratorial flare-up, we are forced to relive Seth’s murder and a small piece of us dies as more of Seth’s memory is torn away from us.”
The Rich family has repeatedly blasted the conservative media for politicizing Seth Rich’s death.
In a statement provided to Business Insider last week, the Rich family’s representative Brad Bauman said, “It’s sad but unsurprising that a group of media outlets who have repeatedly lied to the American people would try and manipulate the legacy of a murder victim in order to forward their own political agenda.”
“I think there is a special place in hell for people like that,” Bauman added.
Since the Rich family spoke out and the controversy picked up media coverage, some outlets, like Fox News and The Daily Caller, pulled their stories on the conspiracy theory.
However, Hannity has continued to call attention to the conspiracy, saying that he’s “working harder than ever to get to the truth the family wants and deserves.”
“I will address this suffering family tonight at 10,” Hannity tweeted Tuesday before his nightly show on Fox News was set to air. “It breaks my heart. Know this, I will pursue the truth wherever it may lead, 4 justice.”
But the Rich family has repeatedly asked Hannity (and others in the media) to stop. Seth’s brother, Aaron, recently wrote a letter to the executive producer of Hannity’s Fox News show, and Rich’s parents are now addressing the media attention in the Post op-ed.
Rich’s parents asked “those purveying falsehoods to give us peace, and to give law enforcement the time and space to do the investigation they need to solve our son’s murder.”
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