Developing now, Friday, Feb. 22, 2019
SMOLLETT'S LAWYERS BLAST CHICAGO POLICE FOR 'LAW ENFORCEMENT SPECTACLE': Jussie Smollett's legal team on Thursday criticized Chicago police for accusing him of staging a "phony attack" and suggested the "Empire" star is being denied due process ... In a statement obtained by Fox News, the 36-year-old Smollett's legal counsel said the nation "witnessed an organized law enforcement spectacle that has no place in the American legal system." "The presumption of innocence, a bedrock in the search for justice, was trampled upon at the expense of Mr. Smollett and notably, on the eve of a Mayoral election," his team continued. "Mr. Smollett is a young man of impeccable character and integrity who fiercely and solemnly maintains his innocence betrayed by a system that apparently wants to skip due process and proceed directly to sentencing.”
Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said at a news conferenceon Thursday that Smollett orchestrated the incident in late January, in which he claimed he was assaulted by two men. Smollett, authorities believe, wanted to take "advantage of the pain and anger of racism to promote his career." Smollett is accused of filing a false police report and has been charged with felony disorderly conduct. He could face up to three years in prison if convicted. Smollett has posted $100,000 bail and returned to the set of "Empire," Fox News has learned.
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- Kamala Harris, who once called Smollett's claims a 'modern-day lynching,' is 'sad, frustrated, and disappointed' about his case
- Charles Barkley jokes about Jussie Smollett, Liam Neeson controversies during TNT’s NBA halftime show