The special prosecutor named to investigate the politically charged case against previous “Empire” on-screen character Jussie Smollett uncovered Monday that he’d co-hosted a 2016 fundraiser for the time being Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx at his powerful law office and furthermore slice a $1,000 check to her campaign.
Dan K. Webb, the co-chairman of Winston and Strawn, wrote in a two-page affirmation recorded in Cook County criminal court that he had “no recollection” of going to the fundraiser or making a donation that he said was likely done at the command of an associate at the firm who put on the occasion.
Webb said the issue was drawn out into the open a week ago by Michael Bromwich, a lawyer for Foxx who “made it clear” that the state’s lawyer won’t guarantee any conflict of intereste or make “any other objection related to this contribution.”
“I should point out that it is common for Winston partners to host fundraisers for political candidates at our firm,” Webb wrote to Cook County Judge Michael Toomin, who named Webb as special prosecutor in the hot-button case in August. “It is also common that my Winston partners request that I contribute to these fundraisers.”
All things considered, the disclosure that Webb gave cash to Foxx’s campaign could conceivably mess up Webb’s progressing investigation into how Foxx’s office took care of an investigation of Smollett that has been overflowing with claims of political impact over the legal procedure.
Webb is required to talk about the political gifts with Toomin at a conference Friday at the Leighton Criminal Court Building.
In a messaged explanation Monday evening, Foxx said she was told of the donation by her battle staff last Tuesday.
“Mr. Webb was notified that same day, and my office continues to cooperate fully with the investigation,” she said
A representative declined to state if Foxx recollected either the fundraiser or the Webb donation
Webb’s recording incorporated a duplicate of the flyer for the fundraiser on Oct. 13, 2016. At the highest point of the greeting, it read, “Please join hosts Kimball Anderson, Oscar David, and Dan Webb in support of Kim Foxx, Democratic nominee for Cook County State’s Attorney.”
Anderson and David are the two accomplices in the firm. Additionally included with the documenting was a duplicate of Webb’s $1,000 watch that he composed from his own financial balance and dated the day preceding the occasion.
Webb, a moderate Republican, said Anderson was a political supporter of Foxx’s who organized the fundraiser at Foxx’s request. Anderson said he “does not recall” Webb going to the occasion, as indicated by the documenting.
“Mr. Anderson stated that the fundraiser was sparsely attended, and that Ms. Foxx and her staff showed up very late,” Webb wrote. “Ms. Foxx then made a few comments to the remaining attendees, and apologized for her lateness and left.”
Webb’s arrangement as uncommon examiner a month and a half prior added much more star capacity to a case that has made about consistent features since Smollett originally answered to police that he was the casualty of a homophobic and supremacist assault on a freezing January night in downtown Chicago.
At first, Smollett drew support from celebrities and politicians across the nation over when he detailed the assault, however that before long went to judgment when he was accused of recording a bogus report with police.
The contention escalated when those charges were dropped by Foxx’s office in February with little clarification. At the time, Foxx had recused herself from the case — purportedly subsequent to having contact with an individual from Smollett’s family right off the bat in the investigation in line with Tina Tchen, Michelle Obama’s previous head of staff.
In June, Toomin established that the whole Smollett case might be lawfully invalid through and through since Foxx improperly named her top representative to take over in the wake of moving to one side.
A previous U.S. lawyer for the Chicago zone, Webb is broadly viewed as one of the city’s most recognized preliminary legal counselors in private work on, having taken care of a not insignificant rundown of prominent customers and went about as unique examiner or in a comparative insightful limit on five different events.
In choosing Webb as extraordinary examiner, Toomin called him “a man guided by a strong moral compass and integrity.”
Webb, in the interim, told journalists after he was confirmed that he was regarded to be called to help “restore the public’s confidence in the integrity of our criminal justice system.”