Jussie Smollet has been arrested and is facing a felony charge for disorderly conduct and filing a false police report. The Empire actor allegedly paid $3,500 to stage a fake attack on himself. The reason? He was "dissatisfied with his salary." According to HuffPost, the 36-year-old actor was getting paid $65,000 per episode.
Jussie Smollett has been arrested and is facing a felony charge for disorderly conduct and filing a false police report
According to police, Jussie previously sent a hoax letter to the set of the show that was filled with racist and homophobic threats and remarks directed to himself. Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson revealed the letter included the word “MAGA” on the corner of the envelope, but when that didn't receive enough attention, the actor paid brothers Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo with a $3,500 check to carry out a staged assault one week later. The assault garnered national attention, including from celebrities like Ellen Degeneres, John Legend and Zendaya, who expressed their sympathies for the television star.
The hoax attack took place in January. According to Jussie's account, two men wrapped a rope around his neck and poured bleach on him while they yelled racial and homophobic slurs. They reportedly yelled, “this is MAGA country” as they fled the scene.
The Empire actor allegedly paid $3,500 to stage a fake attack on himself because he was "dissatisfied with his salary"
At a press conference held Thursday, Chicago police criticized Jussie for allegedly “taking advantage of the pain and anger of racism to promote his career." Chicago PD Superintendent Eddie T. Johnson expressed confusion over the actor's actions.
"I’m left shaking my head and asking why,” he said. “My concern is that hate crimes will now publicly be met with a level of skepticism that previously didn’t happen.”
“Why would anyone, especially an African-American man, use the symbolism of a noose to make false accusations?” Eddie added. “How could someone look at the hatred and suffering associated with that symbol and see an opportunity to manipulate that symbol to further his own public profile?”
For his actions, Jussie is facing up to three years in prison.