CHICAGO (Fox 32 News) - A source outside the Cook County State's Attorney's Office is offering up some reasons why the State's Attorney's Office may have felt they didn't have a strong enough case against Jussie Smollett.
"How could someone look at the hatred and suffering associated with [a noose] and see an opportunity to manipulate that symbol to further his own public profile?" Supt. Eddie Johnson questioned in February as he spoke to the media.
From the start, Superintendent Johnson expressed outrage after detectives said they determined Smollett fabricated the story, and in police reports about the Smollett case released Wednesday, there's a line that says, the "victim did not want to report [the] offense."
Another key part of the case involved the $3500 check Smollett allegedly wrote to his trainers, Abel and Ola Osundairo.
"He did write a check to the brothers for $3500 to stage the attack. In the memo part, it says nutrition, but I’ll say this...if you were buying a kilo of cocaine, would you put in the memo section that this is for a kilo of cocaine?" Supt. Johnson asked on March 1st while addressing reporters.
The brothers' attorney on Wednesday said the check was written, in part, for nutrition and training, and that because it was given to them around the same time as the attack, it was an unspoken agreement they would take part in the staged hate crime. But FOX 32’s source says the money was for training and nutrition, period.
At a February news conference, Johnson also said another factor for Smollett was to get more money.
“The stunt was orchestrated by Smollett because he was dissatisfied with his salary. So he concocted a story about being attacked,” Supt. Johnson had said.
Our source tells FOX 32 that's not true, saying Smollett had recently renegotiated his contract on “Empire” and expressed being content with it.
To recap, FOX 32’s source says the prosecution had a weak case -- the check, the idea that Smollett wanted to gain some attention, and that he wanted more money from “Empire.” For that, and perhaps other reasons, our source says the State’s Attorney’s Office dropped the charges against Smollett.