Jussie Smollett is in hot water once again following the appointment of a high-profile former US attorney being appointed as the special prosecutor on the case to re-examine the dropped charges against the actor, Page Six reported.
The prosecutor, Dan Webb, was appointed by Judge Michael Toomin during a hearing in a Chicago criminal court on Friday morning according to the report, and he is tasked with discerning whether new charges should be brought against the former “Empire” actor
“Webb, who was the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois in 1985, has spent the better half of his career as a private litigator at Winston & Strawn where he is now the co-executive chairman,” Page Six reported. “Smollett’s case won’t be the first time Webb has been called in as a special prosecutor and it’ll be the second time he was appointed by Toomin.”
According to a June ruling by Toomin Smollett could once again be facing charges in the case of his alleged false report of a hate crime that it later was thought to be orchestrated by the actor himself.
According to Page Six since Smollett wasn’t acquitted, but rather had the charges dropped, he could still be charged again.
Toomin said during his June ruling that the case was rife with “unprecedented irregularities” hat he believes could warrant the appointment of an independent “to restore the public’s confidence in the integrity of our criminal justice system” after a series of questionable moves from Chicago State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s office.
“If reasonable grounds exist to further prosecute Smollett, in the interest of justice the special prosecutor may take such action as may be appropriate to effectuate that result,” Toomin wrote.
The judge also had harsh words for Foxx’s office for the way in which they handled the high profile case.
“Jussie Smollett’s case is truly unique among the countless prosecutions heard in this building. A case that purported to have been brought and supervised by a prosecutor serving in the stead of our duly elected State’s Attorney, who in fact was appointed a fictitious office having no legal existence,” Toomin wrote.
“It is also a case that deviated from the statutory mandate requiring the appointment of a special prosecutor in cases where the State’s Attorney is recused,” Toomin went on according to Page Six.
“Here, the ship of the State ventured from its protected harbor without the guiding hand of its captain. There was no master on the bridge to guide the ship as it floundered through uncharted waters. And it ultimately lost its bearings.”
Foxx said in her statement following Toomin’s decision that in her handling of the case she only followed “the advice and counsel of my then Chief Ethics Officer.” However, she didn’t return Page Six’s return request for a follow-up comment.
“I respectfully disagree with the court’s conclusion that, in the absence of any conflict, the appointment of a special prosecutor is required,” Foxx’s statement continued.
Written by Savannah Pointer.