Chicago FOP to Kim Foxx: stay clear of cases involving police
Chicago’s police union has a bunch of reasons for requesting Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx exclude her office from the prosecution of any cases where police officers are victims of crime, or cases where they are accused of misconduct.
In a July 1 letter to Foxx, the Chicago FOP cited two recent cases – one a high-profile case involving actor Jussie Smollett – turned over to special prosecutors after she mishandled them, and her releasing several violent offenders from prison based on allegations of police coercion and intimidation.
“A deep mistrust now exists between your office and ours,” the letter said. “We no longer believe that your office will treat our members fairly either in the arrests they make or when they are victims of crime.”
The letter was signed by FOP president Kevin Graham, two vice presidents Pat Murray and Martin Preib, and Robert Bartlett, co-chair legal defense.
In response, Foxx’s office released a statement calling the FOP letter a “stunt” and noted that her office recently joining Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson, other police chiefs and prosecutors at a national gathering in Washington, D.C. “to build partnerships, agree upon a shared set of values, and address criminal justice reform and public safety – together.”
In the Smollett case, Cook County Judge Michael Toomin last month backed an appellate judge’s motion for a special prosecutor three months after Foxx’s office dismissed charges against the actor for staging a hate crime. The new prosecutor could reopen charges based on the evidence compiled by police.
In a recent development, news reports say that Kankakee County State’s Attorney Jim Rowe is considering a request to act as special prosecutor.
In another instance, a special prosecutor was appointed in May to handle the case of Jedidiah Brown, an anti-police activist charged with battery of two police officers. A former campaign worker for Foxx, Brown stood center stage with her at an April 6 rally, organized to defend her against the backlash that ensued after her office dropped charges against Smollett. And in April, Brown posted a photo of he and Foxx on his Facebook page with this caption: “Let the record reflect. I stand with Kim Foxx. Blue Klux Klan we aren’t going without a fight you will never forget.”
One of the offenders Foxx released from prison is a member of the Spanish Cobras, a violent street gang. The FOP said that vacating the conviction helped the gang member remain in the country despite his known gang allegiance and rap sheet.
“You made this decision at the same time other gang members were on trial for the murder of a Chicago Police Officer,” the letter said.