A jury has found 39-year-old Jussie Smollett guilty on five of six charges stemming from his claim of being attacked in January 2019.
It’s been nearly three years since the former Empire actor first claimed he’d been attacked near his Chicago apartment by two men with seemingly racist intent. Smollett first drew sympathy from fans, peers and public officials around the world – but support turned to suspicion and eventually he faced accusations of faking the assault to raise his public visibility.
Smollett was charged with six counts of disorderly conduct for allegedly hiring a confidant and his brother to assault him on a frigid night in January 2019, scripting even the racial slurs and “MAGA” slogan they were to shout as they attacked.
The case – which already had already drawn its fair share of online jokes – featured several twists and turns that only added to public interest.
For example, Smollett took the stand on Monday (Dec. 6), and said that he met one of the brothers, Abimbola Osundairo, at a club in 2017 and found that he also worked on the set of “Empire.” Smollett then said that the two did drugs together in a bathroom on set. “I always have weed on me … well, not now,” Smollett testified. “And he [Osundairo] had the cocaine.”
Afterward, they went to a bathhouse in the Boystown neighborhood where Smollett said, “they made out”. He also said they did more drugs together and had sex. Osundairo had previously testified the week before that they didn’t have a sexual relationship.
Smollett went on to add that he met Abimbola’s brother, Olabingo but they never spoke.
“He didn’t like me or he wasn’t feeling me — it’s fine,” he stated. When cross-examined by special prosecutor Dan Webb, Smollett stated that he refused to give Chicago police his cellphone because he wanted to retain his privacy and wasn’t concerned if the phone would show several calls to Abimbola Osundairo.
For their part, the brothers gave explicit details regarding Smollett’s wishing for the fake attack. They said Smollett instructed them to put a noose around his neck and rough him up in view of a surveillance camera, and that he said he wanted video of the hoax made public via social media.
Despite being found guilty, many experts agree Smollett will most likely not serve jail time and be granted probation instead.
Happy Birthday Jay-Z: Our Absolute Favorite Photos Of The Carters
1. JAY-Z and Beyoncé OTR ll TourSource:Photo by Raven B. Varona/Parkwood/PictureGrou 1 of 25
2. 2014 MTV Video Music AwardsSource:Getty 2 of 25
3. Celebrity Sightings In New York City - June 05, 2021Source:Getty 3 of 25
4. Milwaukee Bucks v Brooklyn NetsSource:Getty 4 of 25
5. Marc Jacobs Fall 2005 Fashion Show NYCSource:Getty 5 of 25
6. 2004 MTV Video Music AwardsSource:Getty 6 of 25
7. Marc Jacobs Fall 2005 Fashion Show NYCSource:Getty 7 of 25
8. Sean Combs 50th Birthday BashSource:Getty 8 of 25
9. Pre-GRAMMY Gala 2020Source:Getty 9 of 25
10. 2020 Roc Nation THE BRUNCHSource:Getty 10 of 25
11. "The Lion King" European Premiere - VIP ArrivalsSource:Getty 11 of 25
12. Image from Beyonce's Visual Album 'Black is King' on Disney+Source:Parkwood Entertainment 12 of 25
13. The 66th NBA All-Star GameSource:Getty 13 of 25
14. Courtside ActionSource:(Photo by Allen Berezovsky/Getty Images) 14 of 25
15. Beyonce, Jay-Z & Blue Ivy Carter In HawaiiSource:Provided by Beyonce.com 15 of 25
16. Beyonce, Jay Z, & Blue Ivy Carter In HawaiiSource:Provided by Beyonce.com 16 of 25
17. Beyonce, Jay Z & Blue Ivy Carter In HawaiiSource:Provided by Beyonce.com 17 of 25
18. The 59th GRAMMY AwardsSource:Getty 18 of 25
19. 2016 MTV Video Music AwardsSource:Getty 19 of 25
20. Blue Ivy and DadSource:Splash News and Getty 20 of 25
21. Celebrity Sightings In New York City - November 04, 2014Source:Getty 21 of 25
22. Celebrity Sightings In New York City - December 7, 2014Source:Getty 22 of 25
23. Celebrity Sightings In New York City - November 04, 2014Source:Getty 23 of 25
24. 2014 MTV Video Music AwardsSource:Getty 24 of 25
25. 2014 MTV Video Music AwardsSource:Getty 25 of 25
Get Breaking News & Exclusive Contest in Your Inbox:
Breaking: Verdict Announced In Jussie Smollett Trial was originally published on wzakcleveland.com