CHICAGO (CBS) — “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett’s attorney, Patricia Brown Holmes, has contributed to State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s campaign in the past, according to the state elections website.
Brown Holmes donated $250 to Friends for Foxx in December of 2018 and $1,000 in 2015.
Just as quickly as Jussie Smollett left court, leaving behind 16 felony counts, Mayor Rahm Emanuel sent Smollett a bill for the overtime costs, down to the very last penny.
“Brilliant move by the city,” said CBS 2 legal analyst Irv Miller.
Smollett has until Thursday to pay, and if it’s not on time, under municipal code the city can go after Smollett in civil court for up to three times the damages.
Miller says in addition to the money, a civil court decision could rule that Smollett in fact staged his own attack.
“He could do nothing,” Miller said. “He could pay the $130,000 or he could just say to lawyers, ‘We’re going to fight this.’”
If he chooses to fight, Miller said before the city can recoup the money, “there would have to be an actual judgement that he, in fact, lied to the police and filed a false police report.”
They would have to convince a judge or jury that more likely than not Smollett staged his own attack, a much lower bar than in criminal cases.
“You are sort of left scratching your head saying, ‘What was so embarrassing about this case that made the prosecution say, We’re going to drop it?”’ said Eric Sussman, who used to be number two under Foxx.
The role is now held by Joe Magats, who took and ultimately dropped the case after Foxx symbolically recused herself.
“If she’s recused she knows nothing more about the case than you or I do and really has no business opining or speaking for the office about that case if she was, in fact, recused,” Sussman said.
But Foxx did just that days after charges were dropped.
“There was no attempt whatsoever to influence the outcome of this case,” she said.
“You kind of can’t have it both ways,” Sussman said. “You’re either in or you’re out, and Ms. Foxx seems to want it both ways.”
In a commentary by Foxx published by the Chicago Tribune Foxx said she welcomes outside review of how her office handled the case.