Cook Co. judge orders Google turn over all Smollett’s info, Fox exec announces he’ll never be back on show

(ABC News video screenshot)

This may perhaps be the worst week ever of disgraced Hollywood actor Jussie Smollett’s quickly unraveling life …

On Tuesday, Fox Entertainment president Michael Thorn confirmed to TVLine that Smollett will NEVER return to the popular TV series “Empire,” in part because of the hate crime hoax the embattled actor pulled last year.

Less than 24 hours later, word emerged that a judge in Smollett’s home of Chicago has struck him with another devastatingly painful blow by ordering the technology giant Google to turn over essentially everything it has on him and his manager.

“A Cook County judge has ordered Google to turn over Jussie Smollett’s emails, photos, location data and private messages for an entire year as part of the special prosecutor’s investigation into the purported attack on the actor,” the Chicago Tribune confirmed.

The information could help prove without a shadow of a doubt that the actor did indeed commit a hate crime hoax last year. To this day, he continues to claim otherwise, despite an abundance of evidence to the contrary.

Despite all this evidence, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s team ultimately chose last March to drop the charges against him, prompting outrage.

Three months later, Cook County Judge Michael Toomin approved a request for a special prosecutor to reexamine the case “to restore the public’s confidence in the integrity of our criminal justice system.”

Two months later in August, former U.S. Attorney Dan Webb was assigned the job. And another four months later, Webb made his first major move in the investigation by filing search warrants for access to Google’s records on Smollett and his manager.

According to the Tribune, Toomin approved the request on Dec. 6 and included a note that Google and its “representatives, agents and employees” must remain quiet about the order, lest they “jeopardize an ongoing criminal investigation.”

The paper has since obtained a copy of the search warrants and can confirm they demand not only access to Smollett and his manager’s emails but also “drafted and deleted messages; any files in their Google Drive cloud storage services; any Google Voice texts, calls and contacts; search and web browsing history; and location data.”

Moreover, the requests pertain to any records from Nov. 2018 to Nov. 2019, despite the hoax having been committed in late January of 2019. Webb may be seeking messages that show Smollett brainstorming/planning the hoax in late 2018.

He may also be looking for any communications between Smollett and Foxx, the latter of whom has been accused of corruption not only over her shady handling of his case but also the glaring conflicts of interest that she’d failed to disclose.

When she finally came clean about these conflicts of interest in February, she abruptly recused herself from the case but then assigned it to her underlings. This technically allowed her to still oversee and control the direction of the investigation.

In fact, records obtained by the Tribune last April showed that after her underlings indicted Smollett in Foxx, she complained to her top assistant, Joseph Magats, about the charges. And then only a short time later, Magats suddenly dropped all the charges.

Fast-forwarding back to the present, the Tribune has been unable to verify whether Google has complied with the judge’s demands.

“A Google spokesman said he could not comment on specific requests for records from law enforcement,” the outlet notes.

This latest news came only a day after Thorn sat with TVLine for an interview.

“We’re not going to bring Jussie back to the show,” he reportedly said. “There were a number of factors that went into the decision to not bring him back. There were many points of view about if he should come back or if he shouldn’t.”

“As hard as a decision as that was, for us — and when I say us I mean the network, the studio and the producers — it felt like it was in the best interests of the show and the cast.”

He added, “Our hope is that all of the controversy surrounding Jussie doesn’t overshadow the show, which we think is bigger than him.”

Given the news that emerged a day later about Google, it appears Thorn made the right decision. If Webb finds even a shred of evidence in all the records the tech giant has sent him or will soon send them, Smollett may be in store for a lengthy prison sentence

Not that it appears the public would mind:

Vivek Saxena

Senior Staff Writer
[email protected]

V. Saxena is a staff writer for BizPac Review with a decade of experience as a professional writer, and a lifetime of experience as an avid news junkie. He holds a degree in computer technology from Purdue University.
Vivek Saxena

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