Jussie Smollett update: Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx asks for review of how case was handled

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Monday, April 15, 2019
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Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx has asked the county's inspector general to review how her office handled "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett's criminal case.

CHICAGO -- Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx has asked the county's inspector general to review how her office handled "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett's criminal case.

Her request comes amid calls for her resignation and for a special prosecutor to be appointed to Smollett's case.

Foxx said in a statement Friday that she pledges her "full cooperation" and welcomes the investigation from Inspector General Patrick Blanchard. Foxx says "ensuring that I and my office have the community's trust and confidence is paramount to me."

"Potentially, it could prevent a special prosecutor from being appointed," said former prosecutor Bob Milan.

Milan once supervised Blanchard when both worked at the State's Attorney's Office.

"He's a career Cook County prosecutor before he became the inspector general. Very well respected, very smart, and he's a man of integrity," Milan said.

Foxx's request comes one day after the city filed a lawsuit against Smollett seeking to recover more than $130,000 for costs related to the investigation.

Jussie Smollett update: City sues 'Empire' actor for cost of investigating alleged staged attack

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and others have criticized the decision by Foxx's office to drop charges against Smollett accusing him of filing a false report to police that he was the victim of a racist, anti-gay attack in January.

Mayor-Elect Lori Lightfoot declined to say Friday how her administration will handle the case.

"I'm not going to comment on any pending litigation. Obviously this was a decision that was made by the current mayor, Rahm Emanuel," Lightfoot said. "We've got a lot of things on our plate, a lot of pressing issues that are truly affecting people's lives. This doesn't rank as a matter of any importance to me."

Friday afternoon Blanchard confirmed his office is conducting the inquiry. As Cook County's top watchdog, he's investigated various public officials, including then-gubernatorial candidate JB Pritzker, the office of Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle and former Cook County Assessor Joe Berrios.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Previous coverage:

Jussie Smollett update: City sues 'Empire' actor for cost of investigating alleged staged attack

Jussie Smollett attorney responds to Chicago's civil suit threat

Chicago to file civil suit against 'Empire' actor for not paying $130K cost of police investigation

In wake of Jussie Smollett, suburban police chiefs take no confidence stance against State's Attorney Kim Foxx

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Jussie Smollett update: Thousands referred for alternative prosecution by Cook County prosecutors haven't completed process

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Jussie Smollett update: What's inside the CPD investigative file?

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              Mayor Emanuel on Jussie Smollett charges being dropped: 'This is a whitewash of justice'

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                      Jussie Smollett pleads not guilty to disorderly conduct charges in arraignment Thursday

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