CHICAGO - Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx on Tuesday confirmed FOX 32’s Monday report that she will drop the charges against hundreds of people arrested during this month's civil disturbances.
But Foxx said violent offenders, including some looters, will be prosecuted. She talked via Zoom to our political editor Mike Flannery.
Cook County's top prosecutor told us her office will begin next week dropping charges against as many as 817 defendants arrested after the killing of George Floyd.
“Those 817 represent non-violent offenses, offenses that in some cases would be considered ordinance violations outside of the statute. Also, they don't involve crimes of violence or allegations involving a victim,” Foxx said.
As with her previous, controversial decision not to prosecute shoplifters caught with less than $1,000 worth of stolen merchandise, the state's attorney pleads a lack of resources -- made all the worse Tuesday, she said, when county board President Toni Preckwinkle announced a 10-percent cut in the prosecutor's budget.
“You know, Mike, as you saw this past weekend, we had a horrible, horrible spate of violence. And we have limited resources in the state's attorney's office for prosecution. As a result of COVID, we also know our budget is gonna take a hit,” Foxx said.
So why, after a decline in gun violence in Chicago, is it once again exploding?
“We are in real uncharted territory with the global pandemic and the shutdown, where people have been locked in their houses for months, where the economy is tanking and where, really in the last several weeks we've seen this spike where people are starting to go out and these conflicts are starting to flare up,” Foxx said.
She estimated about 200 or so face charges related to looting. She plans to prosecute them.