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Thousands of texts, emails about the Jussie Smollett project made public by the State Attorney's Office Kim Foxx



Just after the news broke out that Jussie Smollett was charged with 16 felony counts, Cook County State Attorney Kim Foxx told his top deputy Smollett a "wash of celeb who lied to police "and the number of countless crimes he faced was excessive, communications obtained by the Chicago Tribune show.

"Sooo … … I was recused, but when people accuse us of overcharging cases … 16 counts in a class 4 (felony) becomes exhibit A," Foxx said a text message to Joseph Magats, his leading assistant, on March 8.

Foxx went to those texts to Magats to compare Smollett's case to the pending indictment of R & B singer R. Kelly at 1

0 remittance charges sexual criminal abuse

"Pedophile with 4 victims 10 counts. Celeb lied to police, 16 (counted)," he wrote. "… Because we can charge something does not mean we should do it."

Smollett, who is African-American and openly gay, has been accused of 16 counts of improper conduct on charges he presented a crime attack on his own. Foxx's office made a firestorm of protest after all of the charges dropped lower than three weeks later in a court hearing that reporters only learned about the last minute.

Late Tuesday, Foxx's office made public thousands of internal texts and emails in Smollett's case in response to requests of public records through the Tribune.

However, the office rejected the express requests for its internal files, saying that it was done because the judge in charge of the case had agreed to seal the moment of the file of the public court. prosecutor has dropped all charges. The Chicago Police Department also declined public-record requests for internal documents for both reasons.

Most of the documents released Tuesday do not deal with the case and make little to explain why prosecutors have decided to discharge the bills as soon as they can be brought.

But they show that the office was largely caught flat-footed by a massive response from the news media in its breathtaking reversal.

Texts between leading prosecutors and his communications offices show a scramble to coordinate their messaging and futilely try to tamp down the heated controversy.

"I would have anticipated the magnitude of this response and planned a bit better!" Assistant State Attorney Risa Lanier, the leading prosecutor in high-profile case, texted Magats hours after the charges were dropped.

"There's really no planning for it," Magats responded. "This is the right decision."

"I agree and stand firm in the decision made," Lanier replied.

In addition, the prosecutor's office issued a notice of the Chicago police shortly before the charges fell as reporters had gathered in the courtroom of a publicist's lawyer Smollett.

"It seems like the press release of Jussie's press release," Lanier's text of the three morning spokesmen case was dismissed.

A Shortly afterwards, a spokeswoman texted that he knew a Police Department spokesperson to inform Superintendent Eddie Johnson.

Foxx Magats said 10 minutes later: "Eddie just calls. (He) needs to know how to answer questions from the press."

Foxx said he told Johnson that the Smollett's charges were dismissed because he ended up serving the community and replaced his bond money – $ 10,000 – in the city

It seemed like an explanation, "Foxx said to Magats.

However, Johnson continued and Mayor Rahm Emanuel is a news conference that morning in the judgment decision – "a failure of justice," the mayor said.

Foxx removed himself from the case in February after he had contacted one of his wives by Smollett early in the investigation, but Foxx's office said he had removed himself from the case informally, since an actual request required his entire office to pass and ask appointment of a special prosecutor.

When asked why the state lawyer was continuing to talk about the case after his withdrawal, a speaker gave a statement on Tuesday night in the name of Foxx saying he had arrived at Magats only "to discuss review of office policies to determine the comparisons of our billing and our use of the appropriate billing authority."

Smollett found himself in the center of an international media firestorm after he reported being a victim of a January 29 attack by two people who shouted slurs, hit him and wrapped a notch in his neck. The police started the incident as a crime of hatred, but their focus was on Smollett after two siblings claiming that his attackers had said the detachments that Smollett paid them for $ 3,500 to establish the attack, which there is a promise of $ 500 more at a later time. [19659002] Transferring charges proves fierce criticism. The administration of Emanuel called on trying to force Smollett to return Chicago for more than $ 130,000 in overtime police expenses spent investigating alleged omissions even though all charges against " Imperial "empire dropped.

is more elaborate on how Smollett's persecution has quickly abandoned. In a Tribune affiliation, he noted his office's initial affirmation that the case was strong, written down to a certain belief, but he did not offer details.

At his request, Cook County Inspector General Patrick Blanchard agreed last week to investigate the handling of Smollett's case office.

mcrepeau@chicagotribune.com

Twitter @ crepeau


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