Newly released texts, emails show behind-the-scenes of Smollett fallout

Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx recused herself from the Jussie Smollett case

Foxx has said she recused herself from the prosecution on February 19, but she was clearly discussing the case with aide Joseph Magats on March 8 when she said, "Sooo, I'm recused, but when people accuse us of overcharging cases ..."

"After the indictment became public, I reached out to Joe to discuss reviewing office policies to assure consistencies in our charging and our use of appropriate charging authority", Foxx said in a statement obtained by USA Today.

"Pedophile with four victims 10 counts".

"It's not who we want to be".

There was no smoking gun but the documents showed Foxx was kept in the loop on - and commented to her staff about - a case in which she publicly claimed to have recused herself.

"I agree and absolutely stand by the decision made", Lanier replied. The decision to drop charges sparked outrage, and was followed by a civil suit by the city of Chicago against Smollett seeking to force the actor to reimburse the city for police department overtime expenses.

Texts messages from State's Attorney Kim Foxx to staff about two weeks before charges were dropped on Jussie Smollett.

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On March 8, Foxx seemed to suggest the misdemeanor charges against Smollett were too severe.

The text messages were revealed in a trove of text messages and emails released on Tuesday in response to a Freedom of Information Act request. Foxx's office created a firestorm of protest after abruptly dropping all the charges less than three weeks later at a court hearing that reporters only learned about at the last minute.

Foxx said she recused herself from the case.

(Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images) Jussie Smollett waves as he follows his attorney after his court appearance at Leighton Courthouse on March 26, 2019 in Chicago. That decision, apparently taken without even consulting police investigators, angered many in Chicago, including the former mayor. In exchange, they said, the actor had done community service and agreed to forfeit his $10,000 bond. Foxx's office later said it was not a formal recusal.

The materials shed light into the frustrations and pressure that Foxx's office was facing as it handled the Smollett case.

After the charges were dropped, Foxx went on the offensive.

Smollett was charged with disorderly conduct for filing a false police report after staging a racist and homophobic attack, telling police two white men beat him up, poured a chemical substance on him and tied a noose around his neck, with one yelling "This is MAGA country". The timeline includes a 41-point, blow-by-blow description, from when Smollett first met the Osundario brothers - the purported attackers - in the fall of 2017 until the final allegation that Smollett continued to be in contact with the brothers days after the alleged attack.

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