Chicago's Fraternal Order of Police is taking aggressive action against the Cook County State's Attorney's office over their decision to drop all charges against "Empire" star Jussie Smollett in return for 16 hours of community service and a forfeited $10,000 court bond.
Tuesday evening, just hours after learning of the State's Attorney's decision, the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) issued a second letter to the United States Attorney's office in Chicago, calling for a federal investigation into Kim Foxx's office, and suggesting that something strange is happening among Chicago's prosecutors.
FOP Vice President Martin Preib told the Chicago Sun-Times that the prosecutor's decision to drop all 17 charges againt Smollett was "highly, highly suspicious" and that the police who worked hard on the case deserve answers as to why prosecutors suddenly decided not to pursue it.
“The conduct of her office from the very beginning of this cases was highly, highly suspicious,” he said. “The entire country is outraged by it. The evidence is overwhelming that he was legitimately charged in this case. This decision appears to be utterly arbitrary, capricious and suspicious.”
When the Sun-Times asked Prieb if he knew any specifics of the decision, he said he'd rather keep his "dark suspicions" to himself until the federal government made their own call as to whether to pursue officers concerns.
The FOP President spoke to Fox News on Wednesday morning and reiterated concens that the Cook County States Attorney seemed to keep the decision not to move forward with prosecution under wraps until the last minute, calling an emergency hearing while most of the Chicago Police Department's top brass — and the city's mayor — were participating in a CPD graduation ceremony and unavailable, even though Smollett had a scheduled court hearing in early April.
“We are interested in having the federal authorities look into what occurred here because we're baffled by what has happened,” FOP President Kevin Graham told Fox.
"We also think that it's a little strange that she never that no one ever told the police department, the F.O.P, the mayor's office that they were going to dismiss the charges in this case.”
This is the second time in as many weeks that the FOP has requested the U.S. attorney look into Kim Foxx's organization.
Just last week, the FOP sent a personal letter to John Lynch, U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, expressing concerns that Foxx, who had recused herself from the Smollett case, had tried to interfere with the Chicago Police Department investigation into Smollett on behalf of Tina Tchen, formerly the Chief of Staff to First Lady Michelle Obama, and a member of Smollet's family, possibly his sister, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, with whom Tchen had a close relationship.
In a series of text messages and emails obtained by NBC Chicago, Foxx was revealed to have spoken with Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson on behalf of Tchen and her unknown Smollett relative, and felt certain she would be able to convince Johnson to turn the case over to the FBI rather than assign CPD officers to investigate.
That plan fell through, and just days after the complaint was lodged, Foxx's office dropped charges against Smollett in return for meager community service and a $10,000 check, pledged to clear Smollett's record, and, thanks to an apparently friendly judge, had all evidence in the case placed under seal.
Although the FOP wasn't certain it could get an investigation into Foxx's office before, Graham now says he believes there is enough evidence — and enough national outrage — to warrant a second look.
“John Lynch, who is the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, is known to be the law and order attorney. I actually believe he will look into this,” Graham said. “And you have to remember that Mr.Smollett claimed that there was a letter, a threatening letter sent to him. And so that is under the jurisdiction of the federal government. And so certainly charges could be brought by federal authorities in this matter and we are hoping that that occurs.”