The LA Times is now bolstering the claim of WikiLeaks' lawyer that Michael Hastings claimed he was being investigated by the FBI in a conversation with her a few hours before her death. The LA Times confirms that Hastings also sent an e-mail hours before his death claiming "close friends and associates" were being interviewed by the FBI and he was going to "go off the radar for a bit."
The e-mail titled "FBI Investigation re NSA" sent to KTLA said Hastings was working on "a big story" and was going to disappear. Hastings warned colleagues to have counsel present if the FBI came to interview them. Hastings sent the e-mail to friends and colleagues and blind-copied his friend Staff Sgt. Joe Biggs according to the LA Times.
Biggs supplied the email to KTLA and said he and Hastings met when the journalist was embedded with Biggs’ unit in Afghanistan in 2008, KTLA reported.
Hastings, 33, died about 4:30 a.m. Tuesday when his 2013 silver Mercedes slammed into a tree in Hancock Park and burst into flames. The car was going so fast, the engine was found more than 100 feet away from the crash, authorities said.
Since Hasting’s death, wild conspiracy theories have bloomed on the Internet, implying he was murdered by powerful forces wanting to silence him.According to the LA Times' story, Hastings was doing research on a new privacy lawsuit filed by Tampa Bay socialite Jill Kelley, who is suing the FBI and Department of Defense for identifying her as the person who reported threatening e-mails she had received from Paula Broadwell, the author and biographer with whom Gen. David Petraeus was having an affair. Petraeus stepped down as CIA Director shortly after details of his relationship with Broadwell became public. Hastings planned to meet with a representative of Kelley in L.A. next week to discuss her privacy lawsuit according to the report.
This blog exclusively reported last November that an unnamed attorney at the White House, Michael Gottlieb, was the person Kelley had visited at the White House several times before the Petreaus scandal became public. Gottlieb's identity was made by simple deduction--he was the only attorney on the White House staff who had worked in Afghanistan at the same time Broadwell was working on her biography of Petraeus, "All In" while he was serving as commander in Afghanistan. Within hours of the initial blog report, someone within the Executive Office of the President" began visiting this blog frequently.
The FBI denies it was investigating Hastings. The FBI similarly denied it had ever investigated Tamerlan Tsarnaev until his mother came forward and claimed the FBI had interviewed her son and her on multiple occasions. Russian authorities later confirmed they had also alerted both the FBI and the CIA about Tsarnaev's activities.
The LA Times says the investigation of Hastings' death is still under investigation, although an earlier report claimed that police said they did not believe foul play was involved despite obvious evidence the car was exploded by a bomb. Witnesses said they heard what sounded like a bomb exploding before his car became completely engulfed in flames and came to rest against a palm tree in the median along Highland Street in Hollywood. Parts of the car, including the car's transmission, were found one hundred feet down the street from the car. Toxicology tests on Hastings will take several weeks according to the report.
Hastings' friend Sgt. Biggs tells KTLA he is very alarmed by the events of this week. “It alarmed me very much,” Biggs said. “I just said it doesn’t seem like him. I don’t know, I just had this gut feeling and it just really bothered me,” he said. Biggs told KTLA he wants to know the truth about what happened to his friend. “I’m going to be willing to help and do whatever I can and make sure that people look into this story and make sure they find out whatever happened.”
KTLA has also identified the videographer with LoudLabs whose car's dash cam captured the footage of Hastings' car running a red light just minutes before the explosion and crash and the footage of Hastings' burning car and crash scene as Scott Lane. “There’s no cars that are following him,” Lane said. “He flies by and 10 seconds, 20 seconds, 30 seconds goes by… No cars are following him.” Lane's opportunistic timing has drawn attention, particularly since he seemed so anxious to put words in the mouths of potential witnesses and videotaped a Miller Lite bottle in the middle of the median a distance from Hastings' car to suggest he was driving while under the influence of alcohol. Melrose and Fairfax Blog, which appears to have some affiliation with LoudLabs, made a point of assuring readers that Lane had nothing to do with Hastings' death.
Some people have accused LOUDLABS of being part of the conspiracy for being so close and arriving at the scene of the crash so quickly. But M&F can attest that LOUDLABS has a knack for getting around Los Angeles and creeping the streets during the midnight hours, and just happened to be nearby when the Michael Hastings tragedy happened.
The footage LL captured of Hastings' car running a red light showed that no one was following him or other vehicles made him crash, and Scott Lane from LL even got interviewed on major news networks with his story. Lane stated that he was not involved in any conspiracy, and he also mentioned believes that high speeds alone led to the crash. However, conspiracy theorists are still propositioning that Hastings' car might have been micro-chipped, thereby causing the high speeds and brake failure leading to the crash.
UPDATE: Check out this video discussing the technological ability to remotely control your automobile. It's pretty scary stuff when you think about it.