Petition Seeking Firing of Swartz Prosecutor Passes Threshold for Response

Don't hold your breath


A whitehouse.gov petition demanding the President Barack Obama administration remove Aaron Swartz's prosecutor in the aftermath of the internet activist's suicide has surpassed 25,000 signatures.

That means the Obama administration is obliged to enter the debate over whether authorities — including line prosecutor Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen Heymann — went too far in prosecuting the 26-year-old internet sensation.

Swartz, a founder of Demand Progress who had written about his own depression, was found dead at his Brooklyn apartment last month. He was under indictment for more than a dozen counts of computer hacking and wire fraud in connection to the illicit downloading of millions of academic articles from a subscription database.