CHICAGO (CBS) — Now that Jussie Smollett has been charged, Chicago police are still trying to figure out how much money and manpower was expended investigating a story he allegedly made up.
Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson was highly steamed about the alleged hoax Jussie Smollett pulled on the city and its cops.
“Those are resources and time spent that we can never get back and we can utilize for another investigation,” Johnson said.
Police haven’t yet totalled up how much money and manpower was dedicated to the Smollett investigation, but Johnson claimed other victims were not shortchanged.
“We have been working on this investigation for about three weeks. We solved several shootings and homicides in that period of time, so we don’t take away resources from violent crimes of that nature just because this person is a celebrity,” added Johnson.
However, police sources tell CBS 2 the resources expended were significant. Twenty-four detectives were removed from regular cases, expending up to 1,000 hours, overtime not included. Police outlined the extraordinary detail of their investigation.
“We interviewed over 100 individuals in a canvass of the area and a followup canvass as our investigation expanded,” said Commander Edward Wodnicki from the Area Central Detective Unit.
In addition, police spent dozens of hours of examining surveillance video from 55 city pod cams and private cameras. And working with federal authorities, they executed 50 search warrants and subpoenas for phone, social media and financial records.
The Fraternal Order of Police is hoping Smollett is ordered to pay back the cost.
“If he is convicted, that the city of Chicago provides him with a bill for all the services that have been rendered from that police department,” said FOP president Kevin Graham.