Some news about Fox News heading into Memorial Day weekend.
The Tampa Bay Times is reporting that a Tampa federal prosecutor is investigating an alleged hack of Fox News that resulted in off-air videos of Tucker Carlson being released to multiple media outlets, including Vice News and liberal watchdog site Media Matters.
According to the reporting, the FBI searched the home of Timothy Burke— a Tampa resident and former Deadspin and Daily Beast writer—in connection with the investigation.
The Tampa Bay Times obtained a letter that was sent to Fox by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jay Trezevant, who asked the cable news channel to “preserve information and records” pertaining to computer hacks at the company. The investigation into the matter, according to the prosecutor’s letter, “concerns allegations of unauthorized computer access; interception of wire, oral or electronic communication; conspiracy; and other federal crimes.”
The news outlet adds, “The letter does not mention Burke, but the Times confirmed with two people close to the investigation that the matter relates to the May 8 search at his Seminole Heights home.”
The investigation concerns illegal conduct “by other subjects,” Trezevant’s letter states. Those subjects are not Fox News staffers or anyone affiliated with the company, according to the letter.
Additionally, the Tampa Bay Times reports that neither Burke, Vice nor Media Matters have been accused of any wrongdoing just yet.
Vice published unaired footage of Carlson’s interview with firebrand hip hop star Kanye West in October 2022, while Media Matters released several behind the scenes/unaired videos on May 9 (a day after the Seminole Heights home search) featuring Carlson on set disparaging Fox News’ streaming service Fox Nation and making other controversial remarks in a series it called “FOXLEAKS.”
Carlson left Fox News Media last month.
The Tampa Bay Times says Fox News declined to comment for its story.
The aforementioned Burke, best known in media circles for having helped debunk the notorious Manti T’eo “catfishing” story in 2013, is married to Tampa City Council member Lynn Hurtak, who has denied any sort of involvement in the leaks.
The Tampa Bay Times says it contacted Burke on Thursday evening and read him portions of the prosecutor’s letter. Burke said that he would have to ask his lawyer if he could make a statement in response. Friday morning, he got back to the Times and said he couldn’t comment. Hurtak previously said in a statement that the search appeared to be exclusively related to her husband’s work as a journalist.