Jussie Smollett‘s career has taken a huge hit since he was accused of staging a hate crime. This week, it was reported that Smollett is no longer considered to play the lead role in the Broadway revival of “Take Me Out,” which is about a about a mixed-race baseball. Also, there have been several reports that this will be Smollett last season on “Empire.”
Now, his older brother, JoJo Smollett is speaking out in an essay for BET. He slams the Chicago Police Department, the Osundairo brothers and the court of public opinion.
In the lengthy essay, JoJo writes, “Within less than three months, his life has been turned upside down as my family and I have witnessed him endure unrelenting attacks to his character and reputation. Like so many others, this entire process quickly devolved from a focus on him as a victim of assault, to him being falsely accused and held responsible for a crime that was perpetrated against him. To define this experience as unjust would be an understatement.”
He also takes aim at the Osundairo brothers, accusing them of changing their story, “Jussie had already refused to sign a complaint against the Osundarios, convinced that these men, one who he had considered a friend and the other an acquaintance, could not be his attackers. Most importantly, detectives refused to show Jussie video, photos, or any evidence to prove they were the attackers. The fact that these two brothers, who in the final hour confessed to attacking my brother yet say it was Jussie who told them to, is all the evidence that the police and the general public needed to be convinced, should be frightening to everyone.”
He continued, “With not one inkling of solid evidence, many believed the false witness testimony from two suspects who turned into witnesses, even though they lacked standard credibility. It was under-reported that one of the “witnesses” had previously been arrested for attempted murder ending with a plea deal for aggravated battery, or that the brothers repeatedly expressed homophobia on their social media in the past. Additionally, it was never reported that they changed their story while under police interrogation.”
Olabinjo Osundairo was charged with attempted murder in 2011. The Chicago Sun-Times reported two months ago, “Court records show that Olabinjo Osundairo was charged with attempted murder in a 2011 stabbing that occurred in the 4200 block of North Ashland. That is less than a block from the home that police raided in the Smollett investigation, where they recovered personal effects, including cell phones, a source said.”
Olabinjo Osundairo allegedly reached a plea deal “with prosecutors and pleaded guilty to aggravated battery; he was sentenced to two years of probation and ordered to pay a $674 fine.”
JoJo rips into the Chicago Police Department, pointing out their inconsistencies, “The Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department announced publicly that Jussie’s motive in staging an attack was so he could make more money from ‘Empire.’ Fox immediately said that wasn’t true but the police chief never withdrew his accusation. The chief also stated as fact that Jussie had sent himself the threatening letter that arrived at the ‘Empire’ production offices weeks before the attack. The FBI then refuted this claim. Again, the chief did not correct his accusations. Letting it float for the public to either believe or not.”
He also added, “The entire police case rested on two witnesses that lacked credibility and there was no physical evidence tying Jussie to this crime.” You can read the full essay, here.
On Jan. 29, while walking to a subway, Smollett claimed two men yelled racial and homophobic slurs at him, investigators told The Hollywood Reporter. They allegedly punched and poured bleach on him while one of the suspects put a rope around his neck. As they fled the scene, Smollett told police they said, “This is MAGA country.”
The city of Chicago is now suing Smollett for a half a million dollars. Kim Foxx, the Cook County State Attorney, has been attacked by the Chicago Police and is calling for a prob into the 16 felony counts being dropped.
Jussie Smollett has maintained his innocence.