Earlier today Allahpundit posted a letter published by the National District Attorneys Association which blasted Kim Foxx’s office for its handling of the Jussie Smollett case. This afternoon the Illinois Prosecutors Bar Association put out its own letter which is even tougher on Foxx. From CWB Chicago [emphasis added]:
The manner in which this case was dismissed was abnormal and unfamiliar to those who practice law in criminal courthouses across the State. Prosecutors, defense attorneys, and judges alike do not recognize the arrangement Mr. Smollett received. Even more problematic, the State’s Attorney and her representatives have fundamentally misled the public on the law and circumstances surrounding the dismissal.
First, the Association criticizes Foxx for her fake recusal from the case saying a genuine recusal would have handed the case off to another office, not to someone who works for Foxx. Next, they criticize her claim that the sealing of the case was “mandatory.” The letter states that’s not true and adds, “The State’s Attorney not only declined to fight the sealing of this case in court, but then provided false information to the public regarding it.” The letter continues:
The appearance of impropriety here is compounded by the fact that this case was not on the regularly scheduled court call, the public had no reasonable notice or opportunity to view these proceedings, and the dismissal was done abruptly at what has been called an “emergency” hearing. To date, the nature of the purported emergency has not been publicly disclosed. The sealing of a court case immediately following a hearing where there was no reasonable notice or opportunity for the public to attend is a matter of grave public concern and undermines the very foundation of our public court system.
But the toughest paragraph has to do with State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s claim this was all part of an ordinary diversion program available to everyone [emphasis added]:
Lastly, the State’s Attorney has claimed this arrangement is “available to all defendants” and “not a new or unusual practice.” There has even been an implication it was done in accordance with a statutory diversion program. These statements are plainly misleading and inaccurate. This action was highly unusual, not a statutory diversion program, and not in accordance with well accepted practices of State’s Attorney initiated diversionary programs. The IPBA supports diversion programs, and recognizes the many benefits they provide to the community, the defendant and to the prosecuting agency. Central to any diversion program, however, is that the defendant must accept responsibility. To be clear here, this simply was not a deferred prosecution.
That would explain the email circulating within the State’s Attorney’s office asking for help finding any similar cases. It turns out there probably aren’t any. The letter ends with a condemnation of Foxx and her Assistant:
Prosecutors must be held to the highest standard of legal ethics in the pursuit of justice. The actions of the Cook County State’s Attorney have fallen woefully short of this expectation. Through the repeated misleading and deceptive statements to the public on Illinois law and circumstances surrounding the Smollett dismissal, the State’s Attorney has failed in her most fundamental ethical obligations to the public. The IPBA condemns these actions.
This irregular arrangement was an affront to prosecutors across the State, the Chicago Police Department, victims of hate crimes, and the people of the City of Chicago and Cook County.
The IPBA is basically calling Kim Foxx a liar. It’s not even particularly subtle about it. The idea that this was just routine, to dismiss 16 felonies in a case that made international news without an admission of responsibility, is laughable according to the IPBA. The CPD, the Mayor, and the National District Attorneys Association agree. How long will Kim Foxx continue to pretend this was all business as usual?