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Top Prosecutor Requests Probe of Her Office in Smollett Case

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Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx has asked county Inspector General Patrick Blanchard to investigate her office’s handling of the Jussie Smollett case, she announced Friday. 

“A former prosecutor, Inspector General Blanchard has been conducting independent inquiries for Cook County for over a decade,” Foxx said in a statement. “Ensuring that I and my office have the community’s trust and confidence is paramount to me, which is why I invited an independent review of this matter. I welcome this investigation and pledge my full cooperation and the cooperation of my office as IG Blanchard conducts his review.”

Foxx’s office decided to drop all charges against “Empire” actor Smollett, who was accused of staging his own hate crime. The decision sparked a war of words between city leaders and Smollett’s legal team.

“I will tell you, I’m not going anywhere,” Foxx told a crowd at the Rainbow PUSH Coalition Saturday.

Politicians and faith leaders have previously pushed back on criticism over how Foxx’s office handled the case.

“This is the same Kim Foxx who vacated 83 convictions that were wrongfully gained from a corrupt police officer who was planting drugs and guns on others,” she recounted.

Meanwhile, the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police and suburban police chiefs gave her a no-confidence vote after her office dismissed all charges against Smollett —even though Foxx recused herself from the case. 

F.O.P. President Kevin Graham says “Ms. Foxx needs to resign and she should do it quickly.”

While Foxx and her supporters are adamant that special treatment wasn’t given to Smollett, the city is still seeking $130,000 from the actor— to pay for the overtime CPD accumulated to investigate his case.

The city of Chicago’s Law Department filed a civil complaint Thursday against Smollett under the city’s false statements ordinance.

Mayor-elect Lori Lightfoot, a former federal prosecutor who will be sworn in as Chicago’s mayor on May 20, has also said during a pre-election debate that “the public has to have answers as to why these charges were dismissed.” But she hasn’t detailed any action she might take as mayor regarding Smollett.

The Smollett case and the city’s effort to make him pay is unusual, according to several legal experts.

“We don’t treat cases differently because of one celebrity, because I can ensure you the people of Cook County state’s attorney doesn’t,” Foxx said.

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Why SNL’s Pete Davidson is Wrong About STDs

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Even though “Saturday Night Live” cast member Pete Davidson joked that he may look like he has a few sexually transmitted diseases, he’s no STD expert.

On the show’s “Weekend Update” this past Saturday, Davidson delivered a monologue based on a real-life report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that showed rising rates of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis in the U.S.

“I don’t see the problem,” Davidson said. “These are all things you can cure with a shot.”

While it’s true that antibiotics can cure chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis infections, some strains of gonorrhea in particular are becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotics and are more difficult than ever to treat.

According to the World Health Organization, two-thirds of the world’s countries have reported gonorrhea cases that resist all known antibiotics.

“If we lose these antibiotics because people are repeatedly getting them after repeated exposures to gonorrhea, then we’re not going to be treating it with one shot, we’re going to be treating it with multiple shots or with multiple drugs,” said Dr. Michael Angarone, assistant professor in the division of infectious diseases at Northwestern Medicine.

Sometimes these infections do not cause symptoms, and go undetected.

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Priyanka Chopra Dishes on New Film ‘The Sky Is Pink’

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By any measure it’s been a busy few months for Priyanka Chopra. Some of you might have heard she got married in December to musician Nick Jonas. Now Chopra’s busy promoting her new film “The Sky is Pink.”

The film recounts the real life tale of Aisha Chaudhary, the teenage motivational speaker and author who died of pulmonary fibrosis in 2015 at the age of 18. Chopra portrays Chaudhary’s mother Aisha and depicts the harrowing story of the family’s struggle to deal with her illness in a tale that’s both inspirational and uplifting.

Chopra sat down with NBC Digital to share what drew her to the story and how she hopes Chaudhary’s battle will help to inspire others.

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Queen Latifah to Be Honored by Harvard University

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Actress. Rapper. W.E.B. Du Bois Medal recipient.

Queen Latifah will be honored by Harvard University’s Hutchins Center with the prestigious award on Oct. 22 in Sanders Theatre, according to the Hutchins Center.

The medal honors those who have made significant contributions to African and African-American history and culture.

Latifah will be alongside Pulitzer Prize winning poet Rita Davis and five others. Opray Winfrey, Dave Chappelle and Colin Kaepernick are past recipients of the honor. Cornel West, a medal recipient himself, will provide closing remarks.

Free tickets are available on Oct. 15 through the Harvard Box Office.

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