Kim Foxx’s handling of Jussie Smollett’s alleged hate crime case — including the contentious decision to suddenly drop all charges against him — will now be examined by a specially appointed prosecutor, an Illinois judge ruled today.
According to FOX32 Chicago, the decision by Cook County Judge Michael Toomin, comes after months of backlash and second-guessing regarding the Cook County State Attorney’s management of the initial case.
Smollett initially claimed he was attacked in the early morning hours of Jan. 29 while walking home to his Chicago apartment.
But by February, Smollett was accused by Chicago police of faking the attack. He denied the allegations and prosecutors later dropped each of the 16 charges he faced.
Foxx had previously said that she would welcome an independent probe by the inspector general, but not a special prosecutor.
The judge’s ruling stated that the special prosecutor was to be appointed in an attempt to “restore the public’s confidence in the integrity of our criminal justice system.”
“If reasonable grounds exists to further prosecute Smollett, in the interest of justice the special prosecutor may take such action,” the judge said.