Published: Thu, November 21, 2019
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

Jussie Smollett Files Suit against City of Chicago for ‘Malicious Prosecution’

Jussie Smollett Files Suit against City of Chicago for ‘Malicious Prosecution’

The 37-year-old claims the city created a false narrative of the attack (that he still claims was real) and it's cost him a lot.

IL prosecutors charged Smollett on Feb 20 with making up the attack, including by hiring two brothers to stage it, and falsely reporting a "high-profile hate crime", to draw publicity after becoming dissatisfied with his Empire salary.

Smollett's federal counterclaim, filed Tuesday in US District Court for the Northern District of IL, was in response to Chicago filing suit against Smollett for $130,000 over his refusal to reimburse the city for overtime payments to police officers who investigated his alleged hoax hate-crime attack earlier this year.

Police said Smollett orchestrated the alleged assault as a publicity stunt because he was unhappy with his pay on the show Empire.

Furthermore, they claim the statements were tainted, because officials "facilitated the false statements by the Osundairo Brothers by allowing Ola, in contravention of protocol, to be present while Abel was being interviewed by CPD officers".

Among the documents released were police statements from the Osundario brothers, who claimed that Smollett paid them to stage the attack, as well as text messages from the office of Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx. "No one knows why, and more importantly, no one can explain why our boss, the head prosecutor of all of Cook County, has made a decision to so demean and debase both our hard work, and our already tenuous relationship with the Chicago Police Department". "He thinks the brothers were lured into the smear campaign by cops", the lawsuit also reportedly states.

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The actor was charged with 16 felony counts, but a prosecutor dropped the charges saying Smollett forfeited his bail money and completed community service.

Finally, the suit provided a few new clues into Smollett's saga.

A source close to the former "Empire" actor told The Post Wednesday that since the dropping of the criminal case, Smollett's "goal" "was to move on from this and get on with his life".

Smollett's counterclaim was filed just under a month after U.S. District Judge Virginia Kendall ruled that Chicago could proceed with its lawsuit against the actor, stating "the city must prove the truth of these allegations to prevail at summary judgment or trial, at which point Smollett will be free to dispute the city's claims".

The conduct of the defendant's named in the counterclaim "was willful and wanton, and committed maliciously, fraudulently, and oppressively, with the wrongful intent of injuring Mr. Smollet, and in conscious disregard of Mr. Smollet's rights", his lawyers allege.

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