Empire actor Jussie Smollett's alleged attack in Chicago in January drew outrage across the entertainment world and beyond. She says she feels the police picked the two brothers up for questioning because there is a loose connection to Smollett, and the men left for Nigeria the same day of the attack.
Rob Elgas of ABC Chicago 7 reported that Smollett staged the attack because his character is being written off of Empire, while CBS Chicago's Brad Edwards says that "non-cooperating 2 witnesses are co-conspirators in a potentially staged attack".
The outlet stresses that Chicago police told them they "cannot confirm any of those reports" and that no charges have been filed. "I still want to believe with everything that has happened, that there's something called justice".
The two men are of Nigerian descent and a relative told the network that several cops banged on the door last night and said they had a search warrant. "I kept walking and then I heard 'f****t Empire n****r" so I turned around and said, 'The f**k did you just say to me?'" For someone like Smollett, who has been active in Black Lives Matter, of course he wouldn't want to give his phone away for four hours.
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"At first, it was like, "Listen, if I tell the truth then that's it because it's the truth", Smollett said.
"And I see the attacker, masked, and he said 'This MAGA country n--' and punches me right in the face, so I punched his ass back".
In a statement, Fox denied that Smollett was being written off the show.
A spokesperson for the Chicago police department has since pushed back on the reports. Supt Eddie Johnson has contacted @ABC7Chicago to state on the record that we have no evidence to support their reporting and their supposed CPD sources are uninformed and inaccurate.
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Smollett said he was aware of Trump saying "It doesn't get worse as far as I'm concerned" when asked about the alleged attack.
I don't need [to make up] some MAGA hat as the cherry on top of some racist sundae.
As previously reported, police wanted Smollett to re-submit his phone records, after the first ones he provided were a "heavily redacted" PDF of his call log.
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"They are not considered suspects at this time as they are now being questioned by detectives", Guglielmi said on Twitter. "Chicago PD has repeatedly informed us that they find Jussie's account of what happened that night consistent and credible", Smollett's publicist said in the statement.