Smollett Makes Loud And Bizarre Outburst In Court, Seemingly Expressing Delusions That He Would Be Murdered While In Cook County Jail
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CHICAGO, IL – Disgraced actor Jussie Smollett has been sentenced to 150 days in jail and a subsequent 30 months of probation for faking a hate crime against himself, in addition to being ordered to pay restitution to the city of Chicago and slapped with the maximum allowable fine.
In Chicago’s George N. Leighton Criminal Courthouse on Thursday, Judge James B. Linn issued a stern rebuke while sentencing the former Empire star, 39, calling him “profoundly arrogant,” “selfish” and “narcissistic.”
“I know that there is nothing that I will do here today that will come close to the damage you have done to your own life. You destroyed your life as you knew it,” Linn said. “Frankly, I do not believe you did it for the money. The only thing I can find is that you really craved the attention. You wanted to make yourself more famous, and for a while it worked.”
Linn also pointed out that Smollett’s actions had harmed a nation “that was slowly trying to heal past injustices and current injustices.”
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Before being taken to begin his sentence at Cook County Jail, Smollett made a loud and extremely bizarre outburst to the court, seemingly expressing delusions that he would be murdered while incarcerated.
“I am not suicidal. I am not suicidal. I am innocent and I am not suicidal. If I did this then it means I stuck my fist in the fears of Black Americans in this country for over 400 years, and the fears of the LGBT community,” Smollett yelled. “Your honor, I respect you and I respect the jury, but I did not do this and I am not suicidal. And if anything happens to me when I go in there, I did not do it to myself and you must all know that. I respect you, your honor. I respect your decision. I am not suicidal.”
In addition to his five month jail sentence and two-and-a-half years of probation, Linn also fined Smollett $25,000 – the maximum allowed –and ordered him to pay $120,106 of restitution to the city of Chicago for costs incurred by authorities while investigating the actor’s false claims that he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack.
Smollett had claimed that he had been attacked outside of his Chicago apartment building at 2 a.m. on January 29, 2019 by masked supporters of former President Donald Trump, saying it was because he was both Black and gay. The actor – who still maintains his innocence – said that the White assailants had beaten him, called him racist and homophobic slurs, tied a noose around his neck and poured bleach on him.
However, police investigating Smollett’s claims later discovered that he had actually orchestrated the incident himself as a publicity stunt to help further his career as an actor. Authorities stated that he had hired two men to stage the attack, with surveillance video reportedly backing up police claims that Smollett was acquainted with the men.
Smollett had been found guilty of five felony counts of disorderly conduct in connection with making false reports to the police; was acquitted on a sixth count of lying to an investigator.
Smollett’s attorneys have said they intend to appeal the verdict.
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