Chicago Schadenfreude: Smollett Charged Again

Chicago Schadenfreude: Smollett Charged Again

Chicago Schadenfreude: Smollett Charged Again

Remember last year, when “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett falsely claimed that two men attacked him in Chicago? According to his story, they yelled racial and homophobic slurs, poured bleach on him, and put a noose around his neck. Oh, and they shouted that Chicago was “MAGA country,” which is positively ridiculous.

Even though the story was a fabrication, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx set aside the charges, with Smollett’s only punishment being forfeiture of $10,000 bond money. Compare that pittance to the $130K the city spent in police overtime investigating a hoax. People in Chicago were rightfully angry.

But now the charges have returned to haunt Smollett. A grand jury just indicted him on six counts of disorderly conduct. Sweet Chicago Schadenfreude!

And this time he doesn’t have Kim Foxx and her connections to Michelle Obama’s staff, who had asked for leniency. Foxx had complied, dropping all 16 original charges, which included filing a false police report, lying to police, and disorderly conduct. Plus, she did not contact the Chicago Police Department, and instead dropped the charges in an unannounced court hearing.

But now, Smollett is facing a new legal eagle: Special Prosecutor Dan Webb, who said in a press release that “further prosecution of Jussie Smollett is ‘in the interest of justice’.”

Kim Foxx, needless to say, is not a happy camper. In fact, she went political in her criticism of Webb, even invoking the name of. . . you guessed it. . . Donald Trump. Here’s her statement:

“What’s questionable here is the James Comey-like timing of that charging decision, just 35 days before an election, which can only be interpreted as the further politicization of the justice system, something voters in the era of Donald Trump should consider offensive.”

Of course Foxx is going to say that. It’s because she’s running for re-election as Cook County State’s Attorney. But now she’s facing three challengers in a March 17 primary, and they smell blood in the water.

And it’s no wonder that many in the Windy City want to kick her out. Foxx has also earned the dubious reputation as the prosecutor who has dismissed thousands of cases and put fewer people in jail. That’s in a city which had a 12% homicide clearance rate in 2019. Smollett

Credit: Chi Hack Night@wikimedia commons/CC BY 3.0.

But what would you expect from a prosecutor who just last month spoke at an event in which she said safety isn’t really about policing? No, it’s more about “restorative justice.”

As of now, Jussie Smollett is required to return to Chicago on February 24, where the whole legal process will begin again for him. A new judge will be assigned and Smollett will be arraigned. Then his attorneys will have to fight the same charges all over again.

But lest you think that Smollett could walk because of double jeopardy, that’s not possible, according to a veteran attorney. That’s because double jeopardy protections don’t kick in unless a defendant has pleaded guilty or not guilty. As the attorney told the Chicago Tribune:

“There was no jeopardy, there was no bench trial, there was no jury trial.”

However, returning to Chicago shouldn’t be a hardship for Jussie Smollett. Last year “Empire” creator Lee Daniels basically fired him from the show, stating that he would not return for Season Six. Plus, a look at Smollett’s publicity page at shows that after his “Empire” stint ended, he didn’t get any more acting gigs.

So Jussie Smollett will be coming back to Chicago after all. I wonder if he’ll be going back to that Subway sandwich store in the Streeterville neighborhood for another tuna sandwich. You know, for old times’ sake.


Featured image: Dominick D/flickr/cropped/CC BY-SA 2.o. 

Written by

Kim is a pint-sized patriot who packs some big contradictions. She is a Baby Boomer who never became a hippie, an active Republican who first registered as a Democrat (okay, it was to help a sorority sister's father in his run for sheriff), and a devout Lutheran who practices yoga. Growing up in small-town Indiana, now living in the Kansas City metro, Kim is a conservative Midwestern gal whose heart is also in the Seattle area, where her eldest daughter, son-in-law, and grandson live. Kim is a working speech pathologist who left school system employment behind to subcontract to an agency, and has never looked back. She describes her conservatism as falling in the mold of Russell Kirk's Ten Conservative Principles. Don't know what they are? Google them!

  • That’s good news!

    God had a great idea to prevent false accusations: The hoaxers would risk getting the punishment they sought for innocent! That would be justice and it would be a deterrent to other false accusations.

    Deuteronomy 19:16–21 If a malicious witness arises to accuse a person of wrongdoing, then both parties to the dispute shall appear before the LORD, before the priests and the judges who are in office in those days. The judges shall inquire diligently, and if the witness is a false witness and has accused his brother falsely, then you shall do to him as he had meant to do to his brother. So you shall purge the evil from your midst. And the rest shall hear and fear, and shall never again commit any such evil among you. Your eye shall not pity. It shall be life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.

  • F.D.R. in Hell says:

    Just in time for Black History Month.

    I was thinking. Maybe Harvey Weinstein could cast him as Dorothy in the prison production of THE WIZARD OF OZ.

  • Joe in PNG says:

    His one mistake- he made the Chi-town Democratic Establishment look bad.

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