Back in January 2019, Jussie Smollett claimed he was the victim of a MAGA-incited hate crime by two masked men in Chicago while he was filming Empire. Jussie swore the situation wasn’t a hoax or a publicity stunt, but even still, updates to the situation made it appear that, yeah, it was a hoax or a publicity stunt. Jussie recently appeared on an Instagram Live interview to discuss his ongoing lawsuit against the Chicago Police Department, and Jussie is still playing the innocent card.
The Chicago PD’s investigation revealed several suspicious aspects of Jussie’s story. Like how Jussie reportedly didn’t want to turn his phone over to police for their investigation. Or that Ola and Abel Osundairo, the two Nigerian brothers arrested in connection with the alleged assault, were quickly released before it was revealed that Jussie was being considered an “active participant” in his attack. Jussie was then charged with allegedly faking a police report and that turned into 16 counts of lying to police. There was also a $3,500 check Jussie wrote to Ola and Abel, which Jussie claimed was for health and fitness training. All the charges against Jussie were eventually dropped. Then Chicago wanted to sue Jussie for the $130,000 they were demanding he payback for the investigation, and Jussie decided to sue the Chicago for their “malicious” investigation against him. WHEW, what a journey. And of course, it’s not over because the FBI is involved.
The FBI got involved because a week before the alleged attack/possible hoax, Jussie claimed to have received a letter in the mail featuring white dust (that turned out to be Tylenol) and a drawing of Jussie with a gun to his head, and the word MAGA. Because it went through the postal system, it’s the FBI’s problem. TMZ says that the City of Chicago is now kind of fighting with the FBI, because Chicago wants the FBI to release the evidence it has collected. Chicago has asked a judge to force the FBI to release any and all information they have on Jussie’s alleged attack, including any possible evidence that might help to prove it wasn’t an attack. The FBI has been investigating for over a year now. The investigation is still going on, which would be why the FBI has responded to the City of Chicago by basically telling them to go back to their deep dish pizzas and leave their investigation alone.
Yesterday, several high-profile Black actors and activists wrote an open letter in support of Jussie, saying that the Chicago PD was basically continuing to poke at the Jussie situation to distract everyone from the ongoing issue of police brutality. Co-signers that included Danny Glover, Angela Davis, Gina Belafonte, and LisaGayHamilton all stressed that they believe Jussie’s story and not whatever the Chicago PD has been saying. Yesterday, author and activist Marc Lamont Hill spoke with Angela Davis about the letter in support of Jussie, which was followed by Jussie’s appearance in an hour-long Instagram Live interview about BLM, police corruption, and Jussie’s case. via Vulture:
Smollett admitted to his current situation being “beyond frustrating.”
“Sometimes I wake up in the morning and I am so angry, but other times if I squint real hard I can see the silver lining…If I’m being completely honest, no I don’t think that [it could be over tomorrow]. They won’t let this go. You know what I’m saying? They won’t let this go. It doesn’t matter…The sad part is that there is an example being made of someone who did not do what they’re being accused of.”
Someone is right here. It might be the City of Chicago who really wants to prove Jussie faked a hate crime. It might be Jussie, who believes the City of Chicago is out to make an example of him by any means necessary. I guess we’ll only know for sure when all this is said and done. Like if the City of Chicago renames a street: Prettysurejussiedidntgetassaultedhere Avenue.
Here’s Jussie’s appearance from the interview yesterday: