Over the weekend, Kim Foxx appeared at a Rainbow/PUSH meeting where she suggested the backlash to her handling of the Jussie Smollett case was about her being a black woman. Jazz wrote about it here. Foxx’s decision to introduce racism into a story in which nearly all of the individuals involved are black (Smollett, the Osundairo brothers, the Police Superintendent) did not sit well with one of the assistant state’s attorneys in Foxx’s own office. CWB Chicago posted a lengthy letter written by the anonymous prosecutor Monday.
In the wake of said criticism, Ms. Foxx speaks at a Rainbow PUSH coalition meeting and states she cannot run an office “driven by anger and public sentiment.” She says “the goal posts change” when an African-American takes the position of head prosecutor, seemingly calling the critique of the SAO’s handling of the Smollett case racially-based and derogatory toward her people. This, while Jamal Green stands on the same stage and refers to the Chicago Police Department as the “blue klux klan,” and Bobby Rush states that the Fraternal Order of Police has long been the sworn enemy of black people.
Notably, State’s Attorney Foxx refused to speak out against these salacious remarks…
When you demean law enforcement like that you not only strip them of their dignity, you also contribute to the violence in the city. Because young African-American boys and girls who hear the head prosecutor, Jesse Jackson, Bobby Rush, Al Sharpton, et al call police racist, act accordingly. They commit acts of violence against innocent police officers. They enact street justice when people are killed, refusing to cooperate with law enforcement and instead promulgating the violence. They lock their doors when police come to talk about murders in their neighborhoods. Unchecked and untrue criticism of the police destroys communities it does not build them up.
Granted the police and Mayor Emanuel were pretty worked up when this decision was first made and a bit later there was a vote of no-confidence in Foxx from white suburban police chiefs. But it’s not as if they are all imagining that the handling of this case was unusual. Two different professional associations that looked at Foxx’s handling of the case said it was abnormal and that her behavior appeared unethical. And another former ASA who worked in her office until last month has called for an investigation. At some point, Foxx has to take responsibility for decisions that people in her own field seem to agree did not make sense.
As for what the result of the Smollett case should have been, the anonymous ASA says it wouldn’t have been a long stint in prison, but it would have been a more regular process:
No prosecutors or police officers, and I mean none, thought that the just result would be for Jussie Smollett to go to prison. He was charged with a Class 4 felony. The anticipated outcome was a reduced sentence, a misdemeanor with some community service or restitution. This would have been done on the record, on a regularly scheduled court date, with the Chicago Police being notified, since they are the “victim” in a disorderly conduct of this nature. This case was handled markedly different from any other case at 26th Street. No one knows why, and more importantly, no one can explain why our boss, the head prosecutor of all of Cook County, has decided to so demean and debase both our hard work, and our already tenuous relationship with the Chicago Police Department.
Just to be clear – this is not an attack on Ms. Foxx’s race, it is an attack on her ethics and her efficacy as State’s Attorney.
Here’s a report from CBS Chicago on the Rainbow PUSH meeting featuring Foxx and Rep. Bobby Rush.