"Empire" Star Jussie Smollett Exonerated From All Criminal Charges
Actor Jussie Smollett Absolved Of 16 Felony Charges
- Empire actor Jussie Smollett is exonerated from all the felony charges.
- The prosecutors dropped all the charges against the 36-year old actor on Tuesday's hearing.
- He was charged with 16-counts of filing false police reports including faking an anti-gay attack on himself.
- He was arrested in February 2019 in Chicago.
The Empire actor Jussie Smollett has been absolved of all the charges. The prosecutors abruptly dropped all the charges against the 36-year-old actor on Tuesday, 26th March.
The actor had been accused 16 counts of filing false police reports including faking the racist, anti-gay attack on himself. He was released on $10,000 bond.
A spokeswoman for the Cook County prosecutors' office released a statement saying the dismissal came after "reviewing all of the facts and circumstances of the case."
On the other side, a representative for the attorney's office released a statement saying the Tuesday's decision "didn't exonerate him." The statement further added,
We stand behind the investigation, we stand behind the decision to charge him and we stand behind the charges in the case.
Meanwhile, actor Smollett's attorney told the actor's record was "wiped clean" of the 16 felony charges. The actor who also agreed to do community services told the reporters after the Tuesday's hearing:
I had been truthful and consistent on every single level since day one. I wouldn't be my mother's son if I was capable of one drop of what I was being accused of.
But, the authorities including the Chicago Police Department and the Mayor of the Chicago, Rahm Emanuel is not satisfied with the prosecutor's abrupt decision. Mayor Emanuel called the decision "a whitewash of justice."
As reported before, Smollett, who is openly gay, reported to police that he was attacked around 2 a.m. on January 29 in downtown Chicago. However, the investigators said that he made the false report as he was unsatisfied with his payment on Empire and believed it was just a publicity stunt to enhance his career.
Moreover, police said, Smollett hired two black men to fake attack him and he reportedly paid the men $3,500. Further, the men were brothers Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo, and one of them had worked on the original Fox series Empire.
Police further reported, Smollett had also sent a threat letter to himself on the sets of Empire. The FBI is still investigating the letter. In the wake of his arrest in February, the Fox network cut Smollett from the final two episodes of Empire where he played Jamal Lyon.
Meanwhile, Fox Television said the company was "gratified" the actor was released in a one-sentence statement.