CHICAGO, IL – Since successfully prosecuting disgraced actor Jussie Smollett for falsely reporting a hate crime after he staged a racist and homophobic attack upon himself in Chicago in January 2019, Special Prosecutor Dan Webb’s report revealed that his predecessor – Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx – reportedly “lied” in multiple instances and ultimately “mishandled” the Smollett case.
In his 60-page report, Webb called Foxx’s handling of the former “Empire” actor’s case a “major failure,” citing multiple detailed instances when she lied in 2019 during Smollett’s initial prosecution, only for Foxx’s office to abruptly drop all 16 charges after she had recused herself from the case.
Webb would later be appointed as a Special Prosecutor when the decision to reinstate charges against Smollett was made amid public outcry due to the overwhelming evidence against him.
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Webb noted in his report that Fox had blatantly lied about multiple aspects of the case, such as claiming to have cut off contact with Smollett’s sister – despite the two exchanging 17 text messages and five phone calls within a span of five days – and falsely stating that Smollett had no criminal background, despite the fact that he had pleaded no contest in 2007 to providing false information to authorities during a Los Angeles DUI stop.
“The fact that the [Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office] represented Mr. Smollett prior conviction related, in part, to making a false statement to police, and thus, similar to this alleged conduct (i.e., making a false police report) in the Initial Smollett case,” Webb’s report said.
“The fact that such a significant mischaracterization could be asserted without sufficient vetting … is unacceptable for an office that must be transparent and maintain public confidence,” Webb’s report said.
At the time that her office dropped the case, Foxx had claimed that the reasoning for the decision was because it was “similar” to 5,700 other cases; however, Webb’s report also disputes that claim as well.
The report also noted that the prosecutor from Foxx’s office never provided any specific reasons why the case was dismissed, that her office had consulted with Smollett’s defense team on a statement announcing the dismissal, and conflicting reports were later given on how the case was settled.
Ultimately, Webb’s report stated that many of the actions taken by Foxx and her office likely constituted serious violations of legal ethics, although he stopped short of calling them “criminal” in nature.
According to the Chicago Times, The judge who originally petitioned for a special prosecutor’s appointment in the case, Sheila O’Brien, released a statement Monday calling for Foxx’s resignation.
“This report shows she is a liar, that her administration is in chaos and that she’s blaming everyone else,” the statement read.