Actor Jussie Smollett of “Empire” fame is now under arrest and in the “custody of detectives” on Thursday morning, Anthony Guglielmi of the Chicago Police Department said.
Smollett had felony criminal charges approved against him Wednesday — and turned himself into police, authorities said.
Police said Smollett was charged just hours after he was “officially classified as a suspect in a criminal investigation” for allegedly “filing a false police report” in connection with his January 29 attack claims.
The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office approved the “disorderly conduct / filing a false police report” charges.
The police department said it will conduct a press briefing on Thursday morning at 9 a.m.
Smollett’s two attorneys, Todd Pugh and Victor Henderson, released a statement on Wednesday on their client’s behalf: “Like any other citizen, Mr. Smollett enjoys the presumption of innocence, particularly when there has been an investigation like this one where information, both true and false, has been repeatedly leaked. Given these circumstances, we intend to conduct a thorough investigation and to mount an aggressive defense.”
On Wednesday night’s “The Ingraham Angle” on Fox News — before the latest news broke about Smollett’s surrender — host Laura Ingraham said that the disgraced actor’s phony claims that white supporters of President Donald Trump attacked him in Chicago last month has had “a toxic, poisonous effect on our discourse” as part of the new “pseudo-intellectual grievance culture.”
Smollett (pictured above), who is gay and African-American, claimed in January that alleged attackers made homophobic and racist remarks to him.
The actor alleged the men threw a noose around his neck and yelled, “This is MAGA country!”
The hate-crime allegations horrified many Americans.
And although inconsistencies and discrepancies plagued Smollett’s version of events almost immediately, mainstream media members and liberals who gobbled up the allegations rushed to tie them in some way to Trump.
Now Smollett has been indicted on a felony charge for allegedly filing a false police report.
Smollett has been accused of paying two men to help him carry out the hate crime hoax.
Press Briefing: Jussie Smollet is under arrest and in custody of detectives. At 9am at #ChicagoPolice Headquarters, Supt Eddie Johnson, Commander of Area Central Detectives Edward Wodnicki will brief reporters on the investigation prior to the defendants appearance in court. pic.twitter.com/9PSv8Ojec2
— Anthony Guglielmi (@AJGuglielmi) February 21, 2019
Ingraham warned that the Smollett controversy represents a key component of the new “victimhood obsession” that’s “infected” society at large.
“Even when [Smollett’s] wild allegations couldn’t be substantiated, even after it appears that Smollett himself organized the attack he initially blamed on MAGA hat-wearing racists, and even after he was charged with filing a false police report, in the eyes of these folks — none of it matters,” Ingraham said.
Chicago native Tio Hardiman, executive director of Violence Interrupters, told Ingraham on Wednesday night that the type of crime Smollett described just “doesn’t happen in Chicago.”
“I’ve been in Chicago all my life, and like I said, I’ve never, ever heard of an attack like this,” Hardiman said. “And Jussie should stop playing games with the people if he’s wrong because he owes everybody in Chicago an apology due to the fact that we have people that are shot every day in Chicago — people that are killed at least every other day in Chicago.”
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