A former assistant state’s attorney who worked for Kim Foxx until last month has filed a petition asking for a Special Counsel to investigate Foxx’s handling of the Jussie Smollett case. From the Chicago Tribune:
The filing by Saani Mohammed, who until recently was an assistant state’s attorney in Foxx’s office, marked the first formal request that a special prosecutor be appointed since the bombshell decision last week to drop all charges against Smollett.
Saying Foxx’s handling of the case was “plagued with irregularity,” Mohammed’s 10-page petition asked that presiding Criminal Court Judge Leroy Martin Jr. appoint a special prosecutor to investigate whether Foxx “acted to impede the investigation … concealed evidence, and/or intentionally misled the public.”…
In a brief telephone interview Thursday, Mohammed said he filed the petition because “there has to be a way for the public to know that there’s no separate justice system for different classes of people.”
The two main points raised by petition are that Foxx made no written agreement with Smollett when dropping the charges and that Foxx failed to properly recuse herself in the case after being in contact with members of Smollett’s family. Neither point seems to be disputed. Both the National District Attorneys Association and the Illinois Prosecutors Bar Association released statements last month criticizing Foxx on similar grounds. The IPBA specifically cited Foxx’s failure to recuse herself and called her handling of the case “abnormal and unfamiliar.”
As Jazz noted earlier today, a group of Chicago police chiefs made a symbolic vote of no confidence in Kim Foxx this week. Yesterday, a group of police chiefs and the head of the police union gathered for a press conference to call on Foxx to resign. From NBC 5 Chicago:
Some 30 police chiefs attended a joint news conference Thursday with the Chicago police union president, Kevin Graham, to support that call.
Steven Stelter, of the West Suburban Chiefs of Police Association, told reporters it wasn’t only about her handling of Smollett’s case. He also pointed to broader Foxx policies to not prosecute many lower-level felonies. He said residents needed to know Foxx “is letting them down.”
Foxx has said she has no intention of resigning. Last Friday she wrote a piece for the Chicago Tribune defending her handling of the case. Notice she’s not shying away from the hot buttons here:
Yes, falsely reporting a hate crime makes me angry, and anyone who does that deserves the community’s outrage. But, as I’ve said since before I was elected, we must separate the people at whom we are angry from the people of whom we are afraid. I am angry at anyone who falsely reports a crime. I am afraid when I see a little girl shot dead while sitting on her mother’s lap. I am afraid when I see a CPD commander slain by a four-time felon who was walking the streets. I am also afraid when I see CPD resources used to initially cover up the shooting death of Laquan McDonald.
I was elected on a promise to rethink the justice system, to keep people out of prison who do not pose a danger to the community. I promised to spend my office’s finite resources on the most serious crimes in order to create communities that are both safer and fairer.
Here’s a video of the police chiefs’ “no confidence” press conference yesterday: