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Crime & Courts

La Salle County State's Attorney asked to be considered special prosecutor in Smollett case

La Salle County State's Attorney Karen Donnelly
La Salle County State's Attorney Karen Donnelly

La Salle County State's Attorney Karen Donnelly said she "respectfully declined" a possible appointment as special prosecutor in the Jussie Smollett case.

The “Empire” actor, Smollett, is accused of faking a racist, anti-gay attack on himself Prosecutors dismissed charges against Smollett related to making a false report. However, the Police Department and city officials maintain Smollett orchestrated the January incident and they're trying to recoup $130,000 the city spent on police overtime.

Further, Smollett wants the lawsuit the city of Chicago filed against him moved from state court to federal court.

Donnelly said in a Facebook post Wednesday she was "extremely honored to be asked to consider the appointment as special prosecutor in the Jussie Smollett case, but I was elected as La Salle County State’s Attorney and my loyalties lie here."

She added: "I understand I was not the only SA to be asked, but still —— WOW!"

She continued that she couldn't commit La Salle County resources to prosecute a case in Cook County, especially when the county is facing a budget crisis.

— The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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