Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx has reportedly received a series of threats following the decision by her office to drop the criminal charges against Empire actor Jussie Smollett.
“We can confirm that the state’s attorney has received threats to her personal safety and security, a number of which have contained racially charged language,” Foxx’s office told the Chicago Sun Times Monday.
According to Foxx’s chief of staff, Jennifer Ballard Croft, the threats came via emails and phone calls. The messages have since been forwarded to the office’s investigation bureau.
Foxx has faced intense scrutiny since her office dropped the charges against Smollett last month. She recused herself from the case early on, but text messages released last week following a Freedom of Information Act request by local media showed she continued to offer input on the matter to her staffers.
The case began when Smollett told officers he was assaulted by two masked men as they shouted racist and homophobic slurs on January 29.
Police later said the actor paid brothers Ola and Abel Osundairo to stage the attack. Smollett was arrested and charged with the 16 counts for allegedly filing a false police report.
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The actor maintained his innocence throughout the case, and pleaded not guilty. Yet in a surprise move on March 26, the state’s attorney’s office dropped the charges after he agreed to forfeit his $10,000 bail and perform community service.
The city is now suing him in civil court to recover more than $130,000 it allegedly spent in police overtime hours investigating the case.
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