CHICAGO — Competing rallies were held Monday afternoon over Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx's handling of the Jussie Smollett case.
The Fraternal Order of Police held a protest outside of Foxx's Loop office. The police union is upset with Foxx's decision to drop all charges against the "Empire" actor, who was charged with staging an attack on himself in Chicago in January.
Foxx suggests the evidence wasn’t as strong as first reported She says Smollett forfeited the $10,000 he paid to post bail and performed community service. She said it was unlikely he’d get prison time for such a crime
Across the street at Daley Plaza, a coalition of groups held a counter-protest at about the same time. They say the police union's fixation on Smollett is hypocritical, and the union has gone to bat for officers charged with more serious crimes.
"No matter who you are in this city, or in this county, we want to make sure that people are treated and respectfully," said FOP president Kevin Graham. "We certainly want to make sure that justice is served in all cases."
"I am personally not here to debate whether or not Jussie Smollett is guilty, but what I also understand is that to have somebody, another black man sitting in jail doesn't do anything to keep communities safe," said protester Tanya Watkins. "And the FOP cares nothing about creating safe communities."
Rev. Jesse Jackson briefly joined counter-protesters, and said he doesn't believe the criticism of Foxx has been fair. He points out that Smollett wasn't charged with a violent crime, and believes it's time for the community to heal and move on.