Entertainment Jussie Smollett is suing city of Chicago over claims he staged homophobic and racist attack on himself
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Former Empire actor Jussie Smollett has launched legal action against the city of Chicago, seeking damages for “mental anguish” caused by claims he faked a homophobic attack.
The actor claimed he was the victim of a homophobic and racist attack in January, which Chicago police officers later have accused him of faking.
Charges against the actor were dropped in March, but the city of Chicago is still pursuing a civil lawsuit against Smollett, seeking to reclaim $130,000 spent investigating his claims.
Woman punched in the face in ‘homophobic attack’ could suffer permanent damage to her sight
A queer woman punched in the face in a ‘homophobic attack’ might suffer permanent damage to her vision as a result. The victim, aged in her 20s, was battered in the back and front of her head in Bournemouth, England. She suffered swelling to the eye socket and had to receive medical treatment. According to the Bournemouth Echo, she was assaulted in the early morning of 25 September. What happened? At around 5am and 6am, she was involved in the altercation at York Road, a quiet residential street just downtown of the city’s main train station. Local police have released a CCTV image of the man they would like to speak to in relation to the incident.
Jussie Smollett says police pursued ‘malicious prosecution’
In a counterclaim filed on Tuesday, the actor sought damages from the city, arguing that he is a victim of a malicious prosecution that has hurt his career.
Smollett’s lawsuit argues that police based their criminal investigation on “unreliable statements” from two brothers, Abel and Ola Osundairo, who told police that they were paid by Smollett to stage the attack.
The actor’s lawyers contend: “It is clear that the Osundairo Brothers faced prosecution by the CPD for the attack, and they decided to advance the false hoax narrative to avoid criminal charges.”
Alongside the city of Chicago, three police officers and the Osundairo brothers are named in the counterclaim.
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Actor wants damages for ‘mental anguish’
The lawsuit states: “Aside from the substantial reputational harm the Osundairo Brothers’ false statements have caused him, Mr. Smollett has also suffered and continues to suffer substantial economic losses, including but not limited to lost employment opportunities and mounting legal fees, as well as severe mental anguish and distress.”
The document also contends that the city’s civil claim against Smollett is invalid, because he has already voluntarily agreed to forfeit a $10,000 bond to settle the dropped criminal case.
Gallery: Jussie Smollett: The 'Empire' star's career in photos (USA Today)
It argues: “Having agreed to accept $10,000 from Mr. Smollett as payment in full in connection with the dismissal of the charges against him, the City cannot seek additional recovery from Mr. Smollett under the doctrine of accord and satisfaction.”
The actor, who was suspended from Empire during the since-dropped criminal case, has not returned to the show for its final season.
In June, Empire creator Lee Daniels closed the door on the prospect of a return for the actor, making clear: “Jussie will NOT be returning to Empire.”
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