Police release bodycam footage of Jussie Smollett wearing ‘noose’
Police officers have released footage of Empire actor Jussie Smollett wearing a noose, after he claimed to be the victim of a hate crime.
The Chicago Police department on Monday (June 24) released a trove of footage and documents related to the January 29 attack, which Smollett has been accused of faking.
The videos include bodycam footage from police officers who attended Smollett’s apartment after his manager called 911 to report the attack.
Empire star ‘wanted police to see’ noose
In the clips, Jussie Smollett’s “creative director” Frank Gatson meets the officers, telling them: “I work with him. He is like a star, works on the show Empire. So I think he doesn’t want it to be a big deal.”
In the footage, Smollett is seen with a white rope tied in a noose around his neck, hours after the alleged incident took place.
Asked if he wanted to remove the noose, Smollett tells officers: “Yeah, I do, I just wanted y’all to see,” before adding: “There’s bleach on me.”
The actor subsequently requests for the police bodycams to be turned off, ending the footage.
Other video evidence shows brothers Abel and Ola Osundairo, who police claim conspired with Smollett to fake the attack, in a taxi on the way to the scene of the alleged attack.
CCTV footage also captured the pair appearing to flee the scene of the incident.
Jussie Smollett case still subject to lawsuits, investigations
All criminal charges against Smollett were dropped in March, but the case remains mired in a complex web of legal action.
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In addition to a civil suit against the actor from the city of Chicago and Chicago Police Department seeking to reclaim policing costs, Smollett’s lawyers are facing libel action from the Osundairo brothers over public statements about their alleged role in the incident.
The Osundairo brothers, who told officers that Smollett paid them $3,500 to fake the homophobic and racist attack, claim they have suffered “irreparable financial damage” and “emotional stress” as a result of accusations they attacked Smollett.
Smollett’s lawyers had produced documents suggesting the money paid to the brothers was a personal training fee, and called for the city to file charges against the Osundairo brothers if there is proof they had perpetrated the attack.
On Friday, a Cook County judge ordered the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate the way the case was handled by State’s Attorney Kim Foxx, who ultimately dropped criminal charges against the actor.
US President Donald Trump, who has repeatedly seized upon the Smollett case at campaign rallies, has also ordered a federal investigation into the incident.