Lawyer in Fox suit seeks to depose Trump, Spicer

Getty Images

Getty Images

Wheeler, who was sacked from the D.C. police, and his attorneys claim that Fox News reporter Malia Zimmerman concocted quotes from Wheeler that alleged there was a connection between Rich and WikiLeaks and that the DNC was working to block the investigation into the former DNC staffer's murder. The lawsuit also quotes a voicemail and text from Butowsky in May 2017 indicating that President Trump had seen a draft of the story before it was published and subsequently went on air with a segment on "Fox and Friends". Wheeler, one of the main sources for the article which was later retracted, claims that Fox News fabricated quotes that they attributed to him to support their story, and that they allegedly ran the story at the behest of the Trump administration.

Rich was killed on a Washington street in the middle of the night previous year. The story claims Rich leaked a trove of DNC emails to WikiLeaks and insinuates that he was murdered by the DNC in retribution for those leaks. Rich's family urged Fox News to leave their son alone, and eventually, the conservative media outlet deleted the Seth Rich story from its website, stating it did not meet company editorial standards. He said he believes it was retracted because Wheeler complained that he was misquoted.

The suit, filed at the USA federal court house in Manhattan on Tuesday, is brought by Rod Wheeler, a Fox News contributor and retired police detective, against the television network, one of its journalists and another of its contributors.

Jay Wallace, president of news at Fox News, said in a statement: "The accusation that FoxNews.com published Malia Zimmerman's story to help detract from coverage of the Russian Federation collusion issue is completely erroneous".

According to the lawsuit, then-White House press secretary Sean Spicer met with Butowsky and Wheeler, was provided Wheeler's investigative notes, and "asked to be kept abreast of developments" with the case. Additionally, Wheeler's lawsuit claims that the story was originally concocted to help take heat off the White House, which has been struggling to contain assorted scandals related to the Trump campaign's contacts with Russian officials during the 2016 election.

Hamburg: One dead, Several Injured in Supermarket Knife Attack
Police said the attacker's motive is unclear but he appears to have acted alone. Armed police have been pictured on the scene having cordoned off the area.

Wheeler's lawsuit received massive coverage Tuesday from the cable networks, was brought up at the White House press briefing, and is the front page of Wednesday's New York Daily News. In discussing his time at Sputnik, Feinberg told CNN, "I [was being] fed questions top-down". I'm not aware of that.

In a statement, Spicer said: "Ed is a longtime supporter of the president's agenda". The lawsuit alleges these quotes were made up to the pleasure of the president, something the White House called "completely untrue" Monday.

Spicer did not explain the discrepancy in his public statements. Family spokesman Brad Bauman told "The Big John and Ramblin' Ray Show" on WLS that the unproven conspiracy theories have compounded the family's grief. "We've got a small business event coming up shortly and hopefully you'll all tune in".

"A reporter making up quotes is a very serious allegation and I don't think it matches the sort of reporter she was in Hawaii", Moore said.

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