When Jussie Smollett told the Chicago Police Department he was assaulted in a hateful racist attack, the whole country gasped. Smollett described how a gang of Trump supports followed him, beat him, and then tied a noose around his neck before leaving him in the gutter. Now the public doesn’t know what to think because new evidence has come forward that throws Smollett’s entire case into question.
Prosecutors shared video and an extremely detailed timeline of the night of the attack as well as the days leading up to it, and it is not looking good for the “Empire” actor. Smollett has since been charged with staging his own racist attack, which he denies he did.
On Thursday, Smollett paid his bond and was freed from Cook County Jail shortly before 5 pm. As he fought his way through the crowds, he said nothing and got into a car waiting for him.
Before he went up for his bond hearing at the Cook County Criminal Court, Smollett’s siblings including Jazz, Jocqui, and Jake showed up in solidarity to support their brother.
Jussie Smollett will return to court on March 14 to face a felony charge of filing a false police report.
The prosecution offered a timeline describing how Smollett designed the hoax in order to extort more money from Empire. Police claim that he hired two brothers from Nigeria to stage the attack. One was Abel Osundairo, who sold ecstasy to Smollett before he allegedly hired him to stage the attack.
According to the prosecution, Smollett convinced Abel and his brother to “simulate” a vicious attack that would give him credibility when addressing the police. The alleged reason he wanted to hire these men to beat him up was that he supposedly did not receive enough attention after sending a threatening letter to the Empire set demanding he gets more money.
Abel and his brother were planning to return to Nigeria a few days after the date of the attack.
Smollett texted, “Might need your help on the low. You around to meet up and talk face to face?”
The actor allegedly took the brothers to a location outside of his apartment and indicated a security camera he thought would capture the attack.
He then gave them $100 to buy gloves, a red hat, bleach, ski masks, and rope for a noose, the prosecution claims.
“He then stated that he wanted the brothers to catch his attention by calling him an Empire f**** Empire n*****. He detailed that he wanted Abel to attack him but not to hurt him too badly and give him a chance to fight back.”
They added, “He also included that he wanted Ola to place a rope around his neck, pour gasoline on him and yell, ‘This is MAGA country’ and ‘Make America Great Again,’” the State Attorney’s office said in a released proffer.
Police have surveillance footage of the ride and phone records between Smollett and the brothers.
During the hearing, Judge John Fitzgerald Lyke Jr. said: “We live in a country where you are presumed innocent. However, if these allegations are true, I find them utterly outrageous. Especially the violent, despicable use of a noose, which conjures such evil in our country.”
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