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Jussie Smollett Case Gets Special Prosecutor to Investigate Why Charges Were Dropped Against the 'Empire' Star

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By Daniel Goldblatt

A judge on Friday appointed a special prosecutor to look into why state prosecutors abruptly dropped charges against Jussie Smollett after he was accused of staging an attack against himself.

Cook County Judge Michael Toomin appointed former U.S. attorney Dan Webb to look into the investigation, which could result in new charges against the "Empire" star.

At a news conference following his appointment, Webb said he believed his duty was to complete three main tasks.

"First, to investigate if any persons or offices involved in the Smollett case engaged in any wrongdoing," Webb said.

He continued, "Number two, determine if reasonable grounds do exist to further prosecute Mr. Smollet."

Webb concluded by saying, "And number three, to submit a written report to the court of our findings and conclusions at the end of the special prosecutor's investigation."

He also said he planned to file a motion requesting the appointment of a special grand jury.

Webb is essentially working on the case for free, only charging for his expenses.

"I'm going to take it one step at a time," Webb said. "I gotta master the facts. I gotta learn the legal issues and I gotta be fair to everybody. But I can tell you right now, our strategy and our plan is to expedite it and move forward very quickly."

Gettyimages | Scott Olson

Smollett's lawyers filed a request earlier this month in an effort to get the Osundairo brothers' grand jury testimony released to the public.

Smollett claims he needs to be able to use their testimony in his legal defense because "other than the Osundairo brothers' self-serving statements which resulted in their release from custody with no criminal charges being filed against them, not a single piece of evidence independently corroborates their claim that the attack was a hoax."

He claims the police have not released the videos of the interviews done with Osundairo brothers on February 15, 2019 while they were in custody. As a result, he argued the "public disclosure of the grand jury transcripts of the Osundairo brothers' testimony is therefore necessary to level the playing field and inform the public of the actual evidence in this case."

His attorneys argue that Smollett has "demonstrated a sufficiently particularized and compelling need for disclosure because the Osundairo brothers' grand jury testimony is material and necessary to the ongoing investigation of this matter as well as to two pending civil lawsuits, one of which was brought by the Osundairo brothers themselves."

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