Jussie Smollet has, again, been indicted by a Chicago grand jury in the latest twist in a headline-grabbing case that has taken numerous turns. In 2019 the actor said he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack.
Smollett, reported to police last January that he had been attacked in Chicago in an incident that ended with a noose around his neck. Police investigated as a possible hate crime.
After investigating, then-Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson, said Smollett had paid brothers Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo — whom he met on the TV show — $3,500 to stage the attack for publicity.Johnson said Smollett, who is gay and black, wanted to take
“advantage of the pain and anger of racism to promote his career.”
Smollett has repeatedly denied making up or orchestrating the attack.
According to CNN, here are the bullet points:
- Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx recused herself from the case in mid-February in response to rumors she was connected to Smollett’s family. First assistant state’s attorney Joe Magats became the lead prosecutor.
- Smollett was initially indicted in March on 16 counts of felony disorderly conduct, charges that were later dropped.
- Dan K. Webb was assigned as a special prosecutor in August to investigate how local prosecutors handled the case.
- The city of Chicago later filed a lawsuit against the actor to recover the more than $130,000 in police overtime utilized to investigate Smollett’s claim of a hate crime.
- The Osundairo brothers filed a lawsuit against Smollett’s legal team for defamation over claims including that they attacked the actor and dealt steroids.
- In August, Webb was appointed as a special prosecutor to investigate the decision to drop the charges — and was given authority to file new charges as appropriate.
- Early this year, Chicago police issued a search warrant ordering Google to turn over a year of Smollett’s personal data including search history, photographs, files and geolocation to Webb.
- On Tuesday, Webb said in a statement his office.
“has now completed all of its investigative steps regarding Jussie Smollett, and has made the decision to further prosecute Mr. Smollett.”
A Cook County, Illinois, grand jury returned a six-count indictment against him for making false reports to police that he was a victim of a hate crime.
Smollett’s attorney Tina Glandian said in a state meant that the special prosecutor
“has not found any evidence of wrongdoing whatsoever related to the dismissal of the charges against Mr. Smollett.
Rather, the charges were appropriately dismissed the first time because they were not supported by the evidence.”
Smollett is scheduled to appear in court February 24.
(Photo, Avalon; via CNN)