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Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel Erupts Over Jussie Smollett Decision: 'How Dare Him'

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Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel voiced his displeasure with prosecutors’ decision to drop all charges against “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett, as well as the actor’s continued claim he is innocent of filing a false police report.

Last month Chicago Police Department Superintendent Eddie Johnson told reporters that Smollett staged a racist and anti-gay attack against himself in the early morning hours of Jan. 29 in downtown Chicago.

The police chief recounted that the television star first sought attention by mailing himself a made-up death threat letter at his workplace “that relied on racial, homophobic and political language.”

When that failed to gain traction in the media, Smollett paid two African-American men $3,500 to stage the attack, according to Johnson.

Smollett told police that at least one of the attackers was white and shouted, “This is MAGA country,” a reference to President Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” campaign slogan.

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On Tuesday, lawyers for Smollett released a statement saying all 16 felony counts related to making a false report had been dropped and claiming their client was the victim of a “rush to judgement.”

Are you surprised by the decision on Smollett?

Emanuel and Johnson held a news conference after the Cook County State’s Attorney’s decision, during which the mayor hammered Smollett for still claiming innocence.

“This is a whitewash of justice,” Emanuel said. “A grand jury could not have been clearer.”

“Mr. Smollett is still saying that he is innocent,” he added. “Still running down the Chicago Police Department. How dare him? How dare him? This is not the superintendent’s word against his.”

“The grand jury (saw) a sliver of the evidence (and) came to a conclusion, as did the state’s attorney’s office … And even after this whitewash, still no sense of ownership of what he’s done. He says, in fact, that he is the wronged in this case.”

“Is there no decency in this man?” the mayor asked.

The State’s Attorney’s Office did not say that Smollett was innocent of wrongdoing when it announced the charges were being dropped.

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First Assistant State’s Attorney Joseph Magats told reporters the agreement reached with the 36-year-old actor is not an “exoneration” of Smollett, and the prosecutor still believes he filed a false police report, based on the facts uncovered by investigators.

Rather than face years of possible jail time if convicted, Smollett is only required to perform community service and has agreed to forfeit his $10,000 bail bond to the city.

Emanuel said the $10,000 did not even come close to paying the cost to the city of investigating Smollett’s alleged hate crime attack, which ultimately resulted in a multi-count indictment against the actor.

Nonetheless, Magats characterized the agreement as a fair and just outcome in the case.

Johnson disagreed, saying to reporters, “You all know where I stand on this. Do I think justice was served? No. What do I think justice is? I think this city is still owed an apology.”

“I’ve heard that they wanted their day in court with TV cameras, so America could know the truth. But no, they chose to hide behind secrecy and broker a deal to circumvent the judicial system,” he said. “I stand behind the detectives’ investigation.”

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Randy DeSoto has written more than 1,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Birthplace
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Nationality
American
Honors/Awards
Graduated dean's list from West Point
Education
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Location
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith




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