Published: Wed, February 12, 2020
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

Jussie Smollett Indicted in Chicago Over Alleged Hate Hoax Attack

Jussie Smollett Indicted in Chicago Over Alleged Hate Hoax Attack

CHICAGO (AP) - A grand jury returned a six-count indictment accusing actor Jussie Smollett of lying to Chicago police when he reported a racist and homophobic attack previous year, a special prosecutor announced Tuesday.

In his press release, Mr. Webb noted that his investigation into the Cook County State's Attorney's Office is ongoing, but added that the Office of the Special Prosecutor "has obtained sufficient factual evidence to determine that it disagrees with how the CCSAO resolved the Smollett case".

He was originally charged with 16 counts of felony disorderly conduct for allegedly lying to police.

Smollett, who is a gay African-American, told police past year that two men attacked him as he was walking home around 2a.m. on January 29, 2019, punching him and putting a noose around his neck while shouting, "this is MAGA country", along with racist and anti-gay slurs.

However, the brothers who were seen as "persons of interest" during the first days of the probe into the attack were quick to get a statement out via their lawyer.

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On Tuesday, the news emerged that Webb had indicted Smollett and the actor is due in court on 24 February.

The special prosecutor tasked with investigating the handling of the Jussie Smollett hoax attack allegations in Chicago has indicted the former "Empire" actor, almost a year after previous charges against Smollett were dropped.

Smollett accused Chicago police of malicious prosecution and said he was the victim of "mass public ridicule and harm" after police alleged he was behind the attack. Foxx recused herself from the case but continued to weigh in.

Chicago police investigated the alleged attack and determined Smollett staged the ordeal in order to gain attention and further his career. All charges against the actor were previously dropped but this likely means that time in jail is a possibility for Smollett. The actor never paid up, forcing the city to sue to collect the funds.

Smollett's case has become an issue in Foxx's bid for a second term.

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