Jussie Smollett Arrested, Police Allege He Staged Attack to Promote Career

UPDATED 2019/02/21

“Empire” star Jussie Smollett was arrested on Thursday morning (2/21/19) on suspicion of filing a false report after alleging that he was attacked on January 29th. His bail hearing is scheduled for Thursday afternoon.

According to Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie T. Johnson, Actor Jussie Smollett paid two brothers $3,500 to stage an attack on himself to take “advantage of the pain and anger of racism to promote his career.” The attack on Smollett did take place, but it was staged, and the police have the check that was used to pay the two men who carried it out. According to Johnson, Smollett staged the attack partly because he was unhappy with his “Empire” salary. The two men punched the actor, wearing gloves, but “as far as [police] can tell, the scratching and bruising that [the public] saw on his face were most likely self-inflicted.”

Johnson also warned of the dangers of filing false reports: “Bogus police report cause real harm. I am offended by what’s happened and I’m also angry. They do harm to every legitimate victim.”

Smollett has not made a statement since he turned himself in to the police.