The family of late Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich just notched a victory in their attempt to disentangle him from a conspiracy theory on the right. Conservative writer Jerome Corsi has a retracted a column he wrote alleging that Rich was involved in the hack of DNC emails that ended up in the hands of WikiLeaks. The column appeared in Infowars, which also issued a retraction statement. "Dr. Corsi acknowledges that his allegations were not based upon any independent factual knowledge," it begins. "It was not Dr. Corsi’s intent to rely upon inaccurate information, or to cause any suffering to Mr. Rich’s family. To that end, Dr. Corsi retracts the article and apologizes to the Rich family."
Rich was fatally shot in 2016 in what police say was a botched robbery. After his death, the conspiracy theory surfaced that he and his brother orchestrated the DNC email hack, and Rolling Stone reports that Corsi's column was meant to defend Roger Stone from allegations that he knew of the WikiLeaks dump in advance. The Rich family previously forced a retraction from the Washington Times on the same subject. (In fact, Corsi says he based his column on one that appeared in the newspaper.) The family's lawsuit against Fox News for reporting the allegation was dismissed, but an appeal is pending. As for the DNC hack, American intelligence officials say Russia is to blame, per the Washington Post. (Read more Jerome Corsi stories.)