CHICAGO —The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office defended its decision to drop all charges against actor Jussie Smollett on Tuesday after the actor was was accused of faking a racist, anti-gay attack on himself.
Chicago’s top prosecutor, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx, recused herself from the investigation, citing conversations she had with a Smollett family member. Cook County First Assistant State’s Attorney Joseph Magats stepped in.
“We looked all the facts and circumstances of the case, the resources that we have, our priority of addressing violent crime, (Smollett’s) criminal background, his lack of criminal background – he didn’t have any felonies or violent felonies in his background … based on all those facts and circumstances, we felt this was a just outcome in the case,” he said.
Magats denied that this was the result of preferential treatment.
“That’s categorically not true,” he said. “This office, in the last two years, has diverted or done alternative prosecutions over 5,700 times.”
Magats said they had “ongoing negotiations” with Smollett and his legal counsel.
Magats said the city will keep the $10,000 bail and completed 16 hours of community service at Operation Push