While Jussie Smollett’s criminal case may have come to an end, the actor is now facing another day in court. According to Deadline, earlier this month, the ex-Empire star has moved to have his $130,000 repayment to the city of Chicago thrown out. Smollett was to pay the $130,000 fine to repay the Chicago police department for their work on his alleged assault case.
Back in January, Smollett came out saying he was attacked in an alleged hate crime while in Chicago. Smollett is best known for portrayal of Jamal Lyon in Fox’s hit TV show Empire. The Chicago Police Department set out to investigate who is at fault for the attack, and they concluded that he was at fault for the attack.
The investigation was treated as a hate crime by the Chicago police and even got the sympathy of Donald Trump as well as the cast and creators of Empire. However, upon further investigation eyes were turned to Smollett. Renai Rodney and Eli T. Zenner of the City of Chicago Department of Law came out and stated, “Indeed, the entire purpose of submitting a police report is to cause police to investigate the report. The CPD investigation and commensurate costs were therefore the natural and foreseeable result of Defendant’s claim that he was the victim of a heinous hate crime.”
Siblings Ola Abel Osundairo came forward and stated that Smollett was the mastermind behind the attack. The Chicago police placed 16 counts of criminal charges against Smollett. Throughout the whole process he proclaimed his innocence, and in late March the case was dropped upon a request from the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office. Sadly, Smollett had already been let go from Empire by then.
Upon learning of the case’s dismissal, figure heads in Chicago came out to speak against it. The mayor at the time, Rahm Emanuel, demanded that Smollett should pay back Chicago P.D. for the time they spent on the investigation. Then, the First Assistant Cook County State’s Attorney, Joseph Magats, admitted to believing that Smollett was guilty of staging the assault.
Smollett is now repped by Lori Lightfoot. Upon learning that Smollett does not want to pay the $130,000, on Monday, Chicago demanded that Smollett is to pay them double what he owes for the Chicago P.D.’s work.
In court on Monday, a statement was released and in it, it stated, “This lawsuit seeks to recover costs that Plaintiff City of Chicago (“City”) incurred because Defendant Jussie Smollett lied when he told Chicago Police Department officers that he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack.”
Rodney and Zenner stated, “The City’s allegations are straightforward: Defendant falsely told CPD officers that he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack, causing CPD to investigate Defendant’s claims and incur commensurate costs.” Chicago wants repayment over $260,000 for their work on his case.
However a spokesperson for the actor stated, “Regardless of what is said by the city, every iota of information Jussie Smollett has stated has been fully corroborated by the police documents. Not documents from his PR or legal team but documents generated by the very people who continuously claim it as fact that he is guilty. But this requires people to look at the actual evidence which nobody seems to want to do.”
In late June, U.S. Attorney Dan Webb was brought in to unravel why the criminal case was dropped, and it is unclear if Smollett will be recharged or not. This move was opposed by the prosecutors claiming these new efforts would have the same results as the earlier investigation. As of right now it looks as though the criminal case could be resolved before the new compensation case is resolved.