The Strange Death of Mr. Smith, Clinton Nemesis, Searching for Hillary’s Missing Emails



Peter W. Smith

The alternative media on the right and left are speculating about the suicide of GOP operative Peter W. Smith. The left says he was colluding with Russians and the Trump campaign to find Hillary’s emails. They think he was murdered. There is no evidence, however, that the Trump campaign was involved. The right says he was killed for attempting to find Hillary’s missing emails. However, the police have confirmed that it was suicide and he’s been dogging the Clintons for years without problem.

His friend doesn’t believe it was suicide

A Wall Street analyst who spoke to Peter Smith the day before he reportedly committed suicide told the Daily Caller News Foundation there were no indications the Chicago businessman and anti-Clinton political investigator was about to take his life.

“He may have been a fantastic actor but I certainly didn’t leave that phone call saying, ‘oh shit, the guy’s at the end of his rope,’” Charles Ortel, a Wall Street investment banker and market analyst, told The Daily Caller News Foundation’s (TheDCNF) Investigative Group.

“This does not seem like a settled story. It made perfect sense to me he might have died of natural causes, but little chance he would have killed himself,” Ortel said.

We interviewed Mr. Ortel at the Sentinel. He’s been chronicling what he says are violations of law by the Clinton Foundation.  He knew Smith personally and both shared an interest in Clinton corruption.

Peter Smith was attempting to find Hillary’s missing emails from Russian hackers

Peter W. Smith, 81, was a Republican operative who told the Wall Street Journal he attempted to collude with Russian hackers. According to the WSJ, Smith put together a team to see if they could find the more than 30,000 missing emails Clinton deleted from her server.  Believing that Russians may have hacked her server, Smith and his team sought out five groups of hackers who claimed to have her emails.  Among those groups, two were Russian.

Smith told a security expert that he was going to discuss it with Michael Flynn, but he has a history of name dropping.

The Journal reported it had seen emails written by Smith showing his team considered retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, then a top adviser to Republican Donald Trump’s campaign, as an ally. Flynn briefly was President Trump’s national security adviser and resigned after it was determined he had failed to disclose contacts with Russia.

Mr. Smith listed Bannon, Conway and Clovis, besides Flynn, in a recruiting document; his purpose isn’t clear and there’s no indication he asked for or received any coordination with them.

In addition, Smith wrote two blog posts dated the day before he was found dead. One challenged U.S. intelligence agency findings that Russia interfered with the 2016 election. Another post predicted: “As attention turns to international affairs, as it will shortly, the Russian interference story will die of its own weight.”

He died with a plastic bag over his head

He left notes saying he timed his death with the expiration of a life insurance policy. His health was also failing. He had fallen on hard times.


A hotel worker said he saw Mr. Smith pacing in the lobby the morning of his death and he appeared to have a lot on his mind.

Early reports said he died of natural causes at the Mayo Clinic. He had visited the clinic ten days before and was still at the same hotel. Later news reports said Smith committed suicide.

Then the Chicago Tribune reported that Smith was asphyxiated. “He was found with a bag over his head with a source of helium attached.”

Rochester police Chief Roger Peterson on Wednesday called Smith’s manner of death “unusual,” but a funeral home worker said he’d seen it before.

Others say it’s a common means of suicide and there is even a book written about it.

A receipt for helium tanks bought the day before at Walmart suggested Mr. Smith brought the tanks. The police never checked Walmart cameras to see if he did buy them because they saw it as an obvious suicide.

Police on Friday said they notified the FBI “as a courtesy” and made it clear that all the evidence pointed to Smith taking his own life.

His body has since been cremated.

Smith had a history of investigating the Clintons

Smith, 81, had a long history of investigating the Clintons. He reportedly had a hand in exposing then-governor Bill Clinton’s “Troopergate” scandal in which the future president used state troopers to guard him while he was having sex with various women.

Smith was behind an unsuccessful 2016 effort to enter the “dark Internet” to uncover Clinton’s deleted emails.

He also had a reputation as a name dropper and one who exaggerated accomplishments.

The final disposition

On June 7, Rochester authorities mailed Smith’s cell phone, credit cards and passport to a daughter in Lake Forest, police said. Smith suffered from heart problems, according to a former employee.

At the top of the key document that spelled out his health concerns and insurance motivations for taking his life, Smith addressed the Minnesota Regional Medical Examiner’s Office.

“Sorry to have involved you,” he wrote, “and appreciate your assistance.”

In the end, his death doesn’t seem all that strange. His last wish was to provide for his family with a $5 million life insurance policy after he got bad news about his heart at the Mayo Clinic.



  1. Working in the Insurance industry for 30 years, I think that suicide usually voids a life insurance policy and no money is paid out. This was a fundamental concept in life insurance.

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