Empire actor Jussie Smollett supporter, Sandra Gentry, proper, and others , discuss as Smollett arrives on the Leighton Felony Courtroom Constructing for his listening to on Thursday, March 14, 2019, in Chicago. Smollett is accused of mendacity to police about being the sufferer of a racist and homophobic assault by two males on Jan. 29 in downtown Chicago. (AP Photograph/Matt Marton) The Related Press
CHICAGO (AP) — “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett informed Chicago police in January that two males bodily attacked him and yelled racial and homophobic slurs. Some key moments within the story:
— Smollett, who’s black and homosexual and performs the homosexual character Jamal Lyon on the Fox TV present, receives a racist and homophobic threatening letter on the Chicago studio the place “Empire” is filmed. Police later say that they consider Smollett despatched the letter himself.
— Smollett tells police he was attacked by two masked males in downtown Chicago whereas strolling dwelling from a Subway sandwich store at 2 a.m. He says the lads beat him, used racial and homophobic slurs, poured an unknown substance on him and wrapped a noose round his neck earlier than fleeing. Police say Smollett additionally informed detectives the attackers additionally yelled he was in “MAGA country,” an obvious reference to President Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” marketing campaign slogan that some Trump critics have decried as racist and discriminatory.
— Police say they’ve reviewed lots of of hours of surveillance digicam footage, together with of Smollett strolling downtown, however none exhibits the assault. Police get hold of and launch pictures of two people they want to query, calling them “persons of interest.”
— Reviews of an assault on Smollett draw outrage and assist for him on social media from some politicians and celebrities.
— Trump tells reporters on the White Home that he noticed a story the evening earlier than about Smollett, saying, “It doesn’t get worse, as far as I’m concerned.”
— Smollett’s household points an announcement calling the assault a racial and homophobic hate crime. They are saying he “has told the police everything” and “his story has never changed,” disputing accusations leveled on social media that he had been lower than cooperative and adjusted his story.
— Smollett points an announcement telling people he is OK and thanking them for his or her assist. He says he is working with authorities and has been “100 percent factual and consistent on every level.”
— Smollett, who can be an R&B singer, provides a live performance in West Hollywood, California, opening with an emotional speech through which he mentioned he needed to play the present as a result of he could not let his attackers win.
— Police say Smollett turned over some, however not all, of the telephone data detectives requested as a part of their investigation. Police say the closely redacted recordsdata aren’t enough. Smollett says he redacted info to guard the privateness of contacts and people not related to the assault.
— Chicago police choose up two males they determine as Nigerian brothers at Chicago’s O’Hare Worldwide Airport on their return from Nigeria after police study at the least one labored on “Empire.” Police query the brothers and search their residence.
— Police say native media reviews that the assault in opposition to Smollett was a hoax are unconfirmed.
— Producers of “Empire” dispute media reviews that Smollett’s character, Jamal Lyon, was being written off the present.
— Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi says the 2 “persons of interest” are actually thought of suspects. He says the lads are in custody however haven’t been charged with against the law.
— Police launch the 2 males with out fees after arresting them on suspicion of assaulting Smollett and holding them for almost 48 hours. Guglielmi says the 2 are not thought of suspects and that investigators have new proof to contemplate on account of questioning them.
— Police say the investigation has “shifted” after the questioning of the 2 brothers and that they’ve requested a follow-up interview with Smollett. Smollett’s legal professionals say the actor feels “victimized” by reviews that he performed a task within the assault.
— Police examine a tip that on the evening Smollett reported being attacked, he was in an elevator at his residence constructing with the 2 Nigerian brothers. Police later dismiss the tip, saying it is not credible primarily based on video proof.
— Chicago’s high prosecutor, Cook dinner County State’s Legal professional Kim Foxx, recuses herself from the investigation. Her workplace says the choice was made “out of an abundance of caution … to address potential questions of impartiality based upon familiarity with potential witnesses in the case.” Foxx later says the explanation for the recusal is that she had conversations with a Smollett member of the family after the incident was reported in late January.
— Police say Smollett is formally suspected of submitting a false police report by claiming he was attacked and grand jury was being introduced with proof from detectives and listening to testimony from the 2 brothers.
— Police say the Cook dinner County State’s Legal professional has charged Smollett with disorderly conduct for submitting a false police report and that detectives had reached out to Smollett’s attorneys to rearrange his give up.
— Police say Smollett turned himself in to face a felony cost of disorderly conduct, which might carry as much as three years in jail.
— Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson says Smollett staged the assault as a result of he was sad together with his wage and needed publicity to additional his profession. Investigators say they’ve a $three,500 examine that Smollett used to pay the brothers to assist him.
— Producers of “Empire” say Jussie Smollett’s character will probably be faraway from the ultimate two episodes of this season.
— The grand jury returns a 16-count indictment charging Smollett with submitting a false police report.
— Smollett pleads not responsible throughout a listening to through which Decide Steven Watkins is assigned to supervise the case, together with the trial.
Try the AP’s full protection of the Jussie Smollett case.
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