Empire actor Jussie Smollett has been charged with filing a false report and disorderly conduct after he told Chicago police last month that he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack, a police spokesman said Wednesday.
Anthony Guglielmi, the Chief Communications Officer for the Chicago Police Department, tweeted on Wednesday: “Felony criminal charges have been approved by @CookCountySAO against Jussie Smollett for Disorderly Conduct / Filing a False Police Report. Detectives will make contact with his legal team to negotiate a reasonable surrender for his arrest.”
Felony criminal charges have been approved by @CookCountySAO against Jussie Smollett for Disorderly Conduct / Filing a False Police Report. Detectives will make contact with his legal team to negotiate a reasonable surrender for his arrest. pic.twitter.com/LvBSYE2kVj
— Anthony Guglielmi (@AJGuglielmi) February 21, 2019
Smollett told Chicago police that two men attacked him while he was walking home around 2 a.m. on Jan. 29. He claimed the men, who he said were wearing masks, yelled racial and homophobic slurs at him, beat him, before pouring a chemical on him and put a rope around his neck.
The alleged attack was being investigated as a possible hate crime.
UPDATE: Attorneys for ‘Empire’ actor Jussie Smollett pledged to “mount an aggressive defense” after Smollett was charged on Wednesday.
“Like any other citizen, Mr. Smollett enjoys the presumption of innocence, particularly when there has been an investigation like this one where information, both true and false, has been repeatedly leaked,” the lawyers, Chicago-based attorneys Todd Pugh and Victor Henderson, said in a statement.
“Given these circumstances, we intend to conduct a thorough investigation and to mount an aggressive defense,” they added.