A 21-year-old woman named Candace Clark allegedly gave a friend access to her bank account and then, when money was removed from the account, told the police that her money had been stolen. Clark denies doing anything wrong but the worst case scenario here is that Clark staged a hoax theft involving a friend. She was charged with one felony count of making a false police report. She has no previous criminal history.
Cook County judge Marc Martin handled Clark’s case and demanded to know why she was being treated differently than Jussie Smollett. Smollett staged a fake hate crime and then made a false police report that he’d been beaten in the street by a pair of white men shouting racial epithets and ranting about MAGA country. A grand jury indicted him on 16 felony counts but State’s Attorney Kim Foxx later dropped all the charges. Fox 32 reports:
According to a transcript obtained by FOX 32, Judge Martin hammered prosecutors, asking, “I’d like to know why Ms. Clark is being treated differently than Jussie Smollett. It’s a disorderly conduct case. A lot less egregious than Mr. Smollett’s case. I have a problem with it.”
Prosecutors were demanding that Clark make full restitution of $2,800 and serve deferred prosecution, something not required of Smollett.
Fox News has more of Judge Martin’s reaction:
“Well, Ms. Clark is not a movie star, she doesn’t have a high-price lawyer, although, her lawyer’s very good. And this smells, big time,” Martin said to prosecutors during a recent hearing, Fox 32 reported. “I didn’t create this mess, your office created this mess. And your explanation is unsatisfactory to this court. She’s being treated differently.
The judge continued, “There’s no publicity on this case. She doesn’t have Mark Geragos as her lawyer or Ron Safer or Judge Brown. It’s not right. And (if) I proceed in this matter, you’re just digging yourselves further in a hole. (If the) press gets a hold of this, it’ll be in a newspaper. Why is Ms. Clark being treated differently than Mr. Smollett?”
That’s a really good question but Kim Foxx’s office refused to comment on the grounds that this was an ongoing case.
The bottom line here is that, even if you assume Candace Clark is guilty, the impact of her actions was nothing compared to the international news generated by the Smollett hoax. What Smollett did was designed to denigrate an entire group of people (white Trump supporters) and it may make it harder for real hate crime victims to be believed in the future. The hoax gave the city a black eye and ate up lots of city resources. And yet all he was required to do was forfeit $10,000 and spend a day volunteering in the offices of the Rainbow/PUSH coalition.
Kim Foxx’s explanation was that Smollett was being treated just like any other non-violent offender with no record. But that’s not true according to several professional groups. And obviously, Judge Martin sees a double standard given that Candace Clark is also a non-violent offender with no record. When you add in Foxx’s fake and intentionally misleading recusal and the ongoing resignation of her staff, it’s clear that her handling of this case stinks.
Here’s Fox 10’s report on Candace Clark and Judge Martin: