Jussie Smollett has been found guilty of the charges against him and he was sentenced to 150 days in jail, 30 months on probation, and fines of more than $150,000 including restitution to the Chicago Police Department for the time and resources that were wasted.
Trending Politics provided a short overview of the case:
Judge James B. Linn said that the evidence against Smollett was “overwhelming” and that the jury verdict in his case was “correct.” Smollett was convicted on 5 counts of disorderly conduct, one for each time he lied to police following the hoax attack.
Calling the evidence “overwhelming” is quite an understatement. The story never quite made sense, although it certainly got backlash and commentary from celebrity racial tension experts around the globe.
According to court documents, Smollett faced a maximum three-year sentence for each of the five felony counts of disorderly conduct – the charge filed for lying to police – for which he was convicted. The sixth count against him was thrown out.
In spite of the fact he said before having his sentence read that he had nothing to say, the actor addressed the court one last time shortly after being ordered into custody to begin serving 150 days in jail.
“I respect you, your honor,” Smollett said as he placed his hands together in a gesture toward the bench. “I respect your decision. Jail time? I am not suicidal. … If anything happens to me in there I did not do it to myself!”
Sheriff’s deputies surrounded Smollett before he was led from the courtroom – not before the actor raised his right fist. “I Am Innocent…I Am Not Suicidal!
In his press conference following the guilty verdict, Dan Webb explained that the message he gave to the jury was that Smollett “faked a hate crime and then lied to the police about it and then compounded his crimes by lying to the jury during the course of this trial and insulting their intelligence.“
“With the resounding verdict we just received from this jury after one day of deliberations in which they found Mr. Smollett guilty on virtually all charges of doing exactly what we said he did – reporting a fake crime to the Chicago Police Department as a real crime. That verdict was a resounding message by the jury that, in fact, Mr. Smollett did exactly what we said he did.“
Webb also talked about how many man hours went into investigating Smollett’s hoax, telling the media, “26 Chicago police officers spent 3000 hours of time, costing the city well over $100,000 for a fake crime that never occurred.”
Added the prosecutor: “And, by the way, a fake crime that denigrates what a real hate crime is. And to use these meanings and symbols that are so abhorrent in our society it’s clear why the police would take it seriously. And they did.”
The hate-filled and poorly-orchestrated hoax perpetrated by Smollett is well known to most people. The pathological actor attempted to stage his own attack in the middle of a freezing winter night in Chicago. He supposedly needed the extra attention in order to land a more lucrative contract for his then-hit show Empire.
He He hired two gay lovers to accost him as he went for a midnight Subway sandwich. In the process, they surrounded him with a noose, smeared chemicals on his face, and shouted, “This is MAGA country!“ He also made sure to mention that he was verbally assaulted, including racialized and homophobic slurs.
When the police arrived on the scene, Smollett was still wearing the noose.. Evidence later emerged showing that the two hired “white” men bought the exact same materials needed to commit the hoax. A video later emerged showing Smollett performing the attack.
Smollett’s sanity is being called into question after this bizarre scene. Despite Smollett’s insistence that he is innocent, we should be concerned-the instances of “suicides” among jailed inmates who might possibly give testimony that could be damaging to members of our government seem to be a little high than statistics would allow.
In fact, I believe there have been around 90 suicides among the friends and acquittances of Hillary Clinton-go figure.
There were countless clueless bloggers and commentators in the immediate aftermath, including then-aspiring presidential candidate Kamala Harris, who tweeted an insane defense of Smollett in the hope of inflaming racial tensions.