Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx has been subpoenaed to appear in court as a lawyer seeks the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate Foxx’s handling of the Jussie Smollett case.
Retired appellate judge Sheila O’Brien, who filed the petition for a special prosecutor, also filed a subpoena for Foxx’s top deputy, Joseph Magats, and another document requesting Jussie Smollett appear at the hearing.
O’Brien requested Foxx, Magats and Smollett produce the original documents in the “Empire” actor’s criminal case to “assure” the public “that they have not been altered or destroyed and will not be destroyed throughout this case,” court documents show.
TIMELINE: The Jussie Smollett investigation
Smollett, who is black and openly gay, had told Chicago police that in late January in Streeterville, two white men yelled racist and homophobic slurs at him, poured bleach on him and put a noose around his neck.
After weeks of investigation, Smollett was charged with disorderly conduct; police said he staged the attack and filed a false report.
Then, at a surprise hearing March 26, all charges were dropped.
O’Brien’s petition for a special prosecutor claimed Foxx’s handling of the case was “plagued with irregularity.”
“Foxx’s conflict in this matter is beyond dispute,” O’Brien wrote, adding that Foxx should have sought appointment of a special prosecutor. “Instead, Foxx misled the public into believing that Smollett’s case was handled like any other prosecution and without influence.”
Emails and text messages turned over to the Chicago Sun-Times, in response to a records request, showed that weeks before Smollett was charged, and when the actor was considered by police to be a crime victim, Foxx had talked to Chicago lawyer Tina Tchen, who put her in touch with a relative of Smollett’s. Foxx also acknowledged urging CPD Supt. Eddie Johnson to turn the investigation over the the FBI.