Posted For: MugsMalone
The Black Lives Matter movement brazenly continues to back shamed actor Jussie Smollett despite him being found guilty of staging a homophobic and racist attack to boost his career.
Smollett, 39, faces 20 years in prison after being found guilty on five of six felony counts of disorderly conduct as his highly-publicized trial came to an end on Thursday.
The actor was accused of having orchestrated a fake attack on himself in January 2019, and then lying to Chicago police about being the victim of an anti-gay, racist hate crime.
Ahead of the guilty verdict, BLM leader Dr. Melina Abdullah announced that the organization would stand by Smollett regardless of how the trial ended.
‘It’s not about a trial or a verdict decided in a white supremacist charade, it’s about how we treat our community when corrupt systems are working to devalue their lives,’ the co-founder of BLM’s Los Angeles chapter said in a statement released Tuesday.
Dr Melina Abdullah announced that Black Lives Matter would continue to stand by disgraced actor Jussie Smollett regardless of the verdict
Smollett, 39, was found guilty on Thursday of five counts of lying to police for fabricating a story of being the victim of a targeted racist and homophobic attack in January 2019
‘We can never believe police, especially the Chicago Police Department (CPD) over Jussie Smollett,’ the co-founder for BLM Los Angeles said in a statement Tuesday
The BLM movement fights for the abolition of police which Abdullah noted in her statement. However, other liberals and BLM supporters have condemned Smollett
She said that Smollett should not be on trial, explaining: ‘We find ourselves, once again, being forced to put our lives and our value in the hands of judges and juries operating in a system that is designed to oppress us, while continuing to face a corrupt and violent police department, which has proven time and again to have no respect for our lives.’
‘In our commitment to abolition, we can never believe police, especially the Chicago Police Department (CPD) over Jussie Smollett, a Black man who has been courageously present, visible, and vocal in the struggle for Black freedom.’
Taking a definitive stance, Abdullah said: ‘While policing at-large is an irredeemable institution, CPD is notorious for its long and deep history of corruption, racism, and brutality.’
‘Chicago police consistently demonstrate that they are among the worst of the worst. Police lie and Chicago police lie especially.’
Abdullah’s comments run counter to the anger expressed by other liberals, when it was first reported that Smollett could have paid people to stage the racial attack in a bid to win sympathy from the producers of his show, Empire.
In February 2019, when reports emerged that Smollett’s story was perhaps not what it seemed, Reverend Al Sharpton was among those to condemn him.
‘I, among many others when hearing of the report, said that the reports were horrific and that we should come with all that we can come with in law enforcement to find out what happened and the guilty should suffer the maximum,’ said the famed civil rights leader.
‘I still maintain that.
‘And if it is that Smollett and these gentlemen did in some way perpetuate something that is not true, they ought to face accountability to the maximum.’
Smollett (center) faced a week-long trial in Chicago two year after making his false claims
Smollett (left) claimed he was ambushed by two white thugs who hurled racist and homophobic slurs at him and tied a noose around his neck in Chicago
Smollett (third from the right) has since been proven to have fabricated the story but maintains his innocence continuing his claims that he was attacked
The New York Anti-Violence project, which works to offer free counseling and eliminate violence and crime directed at LGBTQ and HIV-positive individuals, said at the time they were dismayed at the possibility of Smollett crying wolf.
‘Far too many survivors aren’t believed and don’t get justice for the violence they experience,’ the group said.
‘That’s why we are quick to affirm and believe survivors when they share their stories.
‘For many LGBTQ people across this country, hate violence on the basis of their sexual orientation, gender identity, race and a combination of all of those identities is a daily experience. Increasingly, these experiences with hate violence end up being fatal.
‘These truths mustn’t be overshadowed under these unique circumstances.’
Heidi Beirich, who leads the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Intelligence Project, which tracks and monitors hate groups and crimes, said she was angry at the alleged events.
‘Obviously, I hate the fact that Jussie Smollett lied,’ Beirich said, based on the Chicago police’s account.
‘It is going to give people ammunition to claim that all hate crimes are fake, all hate crime are lies. So, of course we are upset with Smollett for doing this, for opening this door even wider.’
In January 2019, Smollett told police that two masked men attacked him in downtown Chicago, where he was filming his hit drama series, Empire.
Cops said they later discovered the story was bogus and that Smollett staged the attack, paying two Nigerian brothers to brutalize him because he was unhappy with his salary and wanted to promote his career.
Abel is shown outside court after testifying against Smollett last week. Olabinjo Osundairo, who goes by Ola, was not as close to the star. They told DailyMail.com at the trial that they weren’t there out of malice or to seal his fate, but to tell the truth
This is the rope purchased by the brothers to place around Smollett’s neck in the days before the ‘hoax’ attack
A detective testified that he thought Smollett tightened the rope around his neck before police arrived to make it look more like a noose
He was charged March 7 with falsely reporting an offense, but the case was dropped March 26 by the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in return for the actor forfeiting the $10,000 bond he paid.
The City of Chicago later sued Smollett for $130,000 for the cost of the investigation.
The case was revived when a special prosecutor charged Smollett with disorderly conduct over the police reports.
Smollett in October tried to have the case dismissed, but a judge rejected the request in a move Smollett’s attorney interpreted as a violation of rights.
But Judge James Linn noted that Smollett’s case now was being led by a special prosecutor appointed by another judge, an arrangement that he would not upset.
Prosecutors told jurors during opening statements November 30 that Smollett and the brothers he hired were captured on surveillance footage two days before the incident performing a ‘dry run’ of the attack.
Jurors were shown footage of Smollett walking near the scene of the alleged attack with Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo on January 27, 2019.
The brothers are then seen going to the Crafty Beaver for rope, a beauty supply store for masks and hats and a bank to deposit the $3,500 check Smollett paid them to commit the act.
The former TV star stood rigid and showed no emotion as the guilty verdicts were read out in the Chicago courtroom by Judge James Linn.
TIMELINE OF JUSSIE SMOLLETT HOAX ATTACK SCANDAL
Jan. 22, 2019
Smollett receives a racist and homophobic threatening letter at the studio in Chicago where “Empire” is filmed. Police later say they believe Smollett sent the letter himself.
The brothers said Smollett also sent himself this letter to the Fox studio where Empire is filmed a week before the attack. If he did, he faces another 5-10 years in prison on a federal mail fraud charge
Police say Smollett cut his own cheek to make it look like he had suffered injuries in the attack
Jan. 29, 2019
Jussie Smollett tells police he was attacked by two men in downtown Chicago at 2 a.m.
The actor says the men used racist and homophobic slurs, wrapped a rope around his neck and poured an “unknown substance” on him.
Police say Smollett, who is Black and gay, told detectives the attackers also yelled he was in “MAGA country’
Jan. 30, 2019
Chicago police say they’ve reviewed hundreds of hours of surveillance camera footage, including of Smollett walking downtown, but none shows the attack. Police obtain and release images of two people they want to question, calling them ‘persons of interest’
Feb. 1, 2019
Smollett issues a statement saying he’s OK, that he’s working with authorities and has been ‘100 percent factual and consistent on every level.’
Feb. 2, 2019
Smollett opens a concert in West Hollywood, California, with an emotional speech, saying he had to play the show because he couldn’t let his attackers win
Police released this image of ‘persons of interest’ taken near the reported attack
Feb. 13, 2019
Chicago police pick up two Nigerian brothers at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport after police learn at least one worked on Empire
Police question them and search their apartment
Jussie Smollett on Good Morning America on February 14, 2019
February 20, 2019
Smollett is charged
Feb. 21, 2019
Chicago police say Smollett surrenders to face a felony charge of disorderly conduct, punishable by up to three years in prison.
Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson says Smollett staged the attack because he was unhappy with his salary and wanted publicity. Investigators say they have a $3,500 check that Smollett used to pay the two brothers to help him.
Chicago Police Department Superintendent Eddie T. Johnson tore through Smollett at a press conference on Thursday where he labeled him ‘shameful’ and ‘despicable’
Jussie Smollett is shown in his mugshot in February 2019
Feb. 22, 2019
Empire producers say Smollett’s character to be removed from the final two episodes of the season.
March 7, 2019
A Cook County grand jury returns a 16-count indictment charging Smollett with falsely reporting an offense
March 26, 2019
Smollett’s attorneys say charges alleging he lied to police have been dropped.
March 28, 2019
A city official says Chicago is seeking $130,000 from Smollett to cover the cost of the investigation into his reported beating, which police say was staged.
Smollett’s attorney Tina Glandian claims on TV that the attackers could have been wearing ‘white face’ and that’s what made him describe them as light-skinned
April 11, 2019
The city of Chicago files a lawsuit seeking to recoup the investigation costs.
Jussie Smollett’s lawyer Tina Glandian suggested on Thursday that the reason he told police his Nigerian attackers were white was because they ‘might have been wearing white face’ and had disguised themselves. Her evidence of the theory is 2016 video of Abel Osundairo (right) dressed up as the Joker
Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx recused herself from the Smollett case
April 23, 2019
The brothers who said they helped Smollett stage the attack file a defamation lawsuit against the actor’s attorneys.
Aug. 23, 2019
Judge names former U.S. Attorney Dan Webb as special prosecutor to investigate why charges against Smollett were dropped.
Feb. 11, 2020
Webb says grand jury returns six-count indictment against Smollett, accusing him of lying to police.
Feb. 24, 2020
Smollett pleads not guilty to restored charges.
Oct. 15, 2021
Judge James Linn denies a last-ditch effort to dismiss the criminal case against Smollett and sets his trial for Nov. 29.
November 29, 2021: Jury selection begins