The Chicago Police Department’s Chief Communications Officer tweeted out the announcement that ‘Empire’ star Jussie Smollett is “officially classified as a suspect in a criminal investigation” for allegedly “filing a false police report”.
Chicago police detectives laid out their case before a grand jury today.
After weeks of investigating the alleged attack on Smollett, the case has officially turned on him:
Case Update: Jussie Smollett is now officially classified as a suspect in a criminal investigation by Chicago Police for filing a false police report (Class 4 felony). Detectives are currently presenting evidence before a Cook County Grand Jury.
Case Update: Jussie Smollett is now officially classified as a suspect in a criminal investigation by #ChicagoPolice for filing a false police report (Class 4 felony). Detectives are currently presenting evidence before a Cook County Grand Jury. pic.twitter.com/FhDcbBKsuU
— Anthony Guglielmi (@AJGuglielmi) February 20, 2019
Smollett reported that he was attacked by Trump supporters on January 29th but the case began to unravel.
In a tearful interview with ABC News’ Robin Roberts, Smollett retold his story. Listen to what he says about masked men yelling:
“This MAGA country”
Two brothers were eventually arrested and questioned about the attack. They weren’t charged but revealed that they had been involved in a fake attack and paid by Smollett to carry it out.
After searching their apartment, the Chicago police gathered evidence that solidified their case.
Smollett has continued to deny his guilt. He’s scheduled to be in court on Thursday at 1:30 CT.
OUR PREVIOUS REPORT ON THE SMOLLETT CASE:
The local CBS News is reporting a new twist in the Empire star Jussie Smollett’s hate hoax attack. Several new items of information have been revealed that further incriminate ‘Empire’ actor Jussie Smollett. The latest report shows just how involved the three men were in executing the hate hoax where Smollett claimed two men yelled: “This is MAGA country!”
The Nigerian brothers, Abimbola ‘Abel’ and Olabinjo ‘Ola’ Osundairo, are telling police officers that Smollett paid them $3,500 to commit the hate hoax and then would pay them another $500 upon their return from Nigeria to the US. They are also saying that the hate hoax was rehearsed.
CBS News reports:
Sources said one of the brothers held the rope and poured bleach while the other wore a plain red hat and yelled slurs at Smollett.
The sources say the red hat was bought at an Uptown beauty supply store and that the attack was supposed to happen before Jan. 29. The brothers told detectives the three men rehearsed the attack days prior to it happening.
The rope used in the attack was purchased at a local hardware store by the brothers.
The Chicago police gathered evidence (see below) that included many of the items reportedly used in the attack including a red hat, bleach, and a rope.
The Chicago police and FBI continue to investigate who sent threatening letters to Smollett eight days before the attack happened:
When police raided the home of the 2 brothers they found magazines with pages torn out, and authorities are now trying to determine if the missing pages are connected to the threatening letter that was sent to Jussie 8 days before the alleged attack.
This could produce another twist in the story that’s been in the national spotlight for weeks.
Smollett hired a criminal defense attorney to represent him. The attorney has already released a statement defending Smollett:
“As a victim of a hate crime who has cooperated with the police investigation, Jussie Smollett is angered and devastated by recent reports that the perpetrators are individuals he is familiar with. He has now been further victimized by claims attributed to these alleged perpetrators that Jussie played a role in his own attack. Nothing is further from the truth and anyone claiming otherwise is lying.
“One of these purported suspects was Jussie’s personal trainer who he hired to ready him physically for a music video. It is impossible to believe that this person could have played a role in the crime against Jussie or would falsely claim Jussie’s complicity.
The Nigerian brothers are living at an undisclosed location while police continue to investigate this hate hoax.
The Chicago police continue to investigate the crime where the victim could become the suspect.
CBS’ Brad Edwards reports:
— Brad Edwards (@tvbrad) February 15, 2019
“ORCHESTRATED BY THE ACTOR”
Chicago’s CBS2 reports:
Two sources with intimate knowledge of the investigation tell CBS 2 Investigator Brad Edwards the attack on Smollett was potentially orchestrated by the actor himself and involved the two other men.
TWO NIGERIAN MEN:
BREAKING:Police raided the home of two persons of interest in Jussie Smollett case last night. Both men are of Nigerian decent and have appeared as extras on the show. Police took bleach, shoes electronics and more.Officers asked family if they knew #Jussiesmollett. @cbschicago pic.twitter.com/PDSFtf5jwb
— Charlie De Mar (@CharlieDeMar) February 14, 2019
Charlie De Mar of CBS Chicago posted a photo of the list of things taken from the apartment of the two Nigerian men.
Also on the inventory list taken from the brothers home was “Script-Empire.”
— Charlie De Mar (@CharlieDeMar) February 15, 2019
One item is a script from the show ‘Empire’.