The US actor Jussie Smollett, accused of lying to the police claiming to have been a victim of homophobic and racist aggression in January, pleaded Thursday not guilty in a court in Chicago.
The singer and comedian of 36, black and homosexual, is prosecuted for filing false complaint, considered a “serious offense”. The police accuse him of having invented this aggression in order to advance his career.
Jussie Smollett was one of the stars of the “Empire” series, which he landed for the last two episodes of the current season after the revelation of the case.
He is accused of sending a false letter containing racist and homophobic insults. He then hired two men to simulate his assault in late January in downtown Chicago, and filed a complaint soon after.
The alleged assault had caused a stir and Jussie Smollett had received the support of many personalities. But the police soon had doubts about the facts. He allegedly paid $ 3,500 to the two alleged attackers, two brothers from Nigeria, to simulate the attack.
According to the indictment, he felt poorly paid for his role in the series and hoped to boost his reputation and career.
Jussie Smollett claims her innocence. Her lawyer, Tina Glandian, denounced Tuesday the “bad information” surrounding the case.
He has to appear again on April 17.
Chris Mcfadden is the lead editor for Swerd Media. Chris has written for several online publications including the Huffington Post, Vanity Fair and Bleacher Report. Chris is based in Los Angeles and covers issues affecting California. When he’s not busy writing, Chris enjoys traveling and hiking.