Monday, June 17, 2024

“Empire” Actor Jussie Smollett Indicted in Chicago on 6 Counts of Disorderly Conduct from his Prior “Hate Crime” Case


The sixth and final season of “Empire” on Fox isn’t as good as the real story of former star Jussie Smollett.

Smollett was indicted yesterday on six counts of disorderly conduct concerning his allegedly fake racist mugging incident from January 29, 2019. Smollett pleaded not guilty to 16 counts of disorderly conduct after claiming he’d been mugged. The story became an international phenomenon when he couldn’t prove that it happened. The charges, however, were dropped in March 2019. Smollett thought he’d walked away a free man with no jail time or trial. But now he’s been indicted anyway.

“Smollett planned and participated in a staged hate crime attack, and thereafter made numerous false statements to Chicago Police Department officers on multiple occasions, reporting a heinous hate crime that he, in fact, knew had not occurred,” Webb’s office said in a statement, adding that further prosecution of Smollett is “in the interest of justice.”

“Empire” has been off the air since December. The first 10 episodes of its final season averaged 2.7 million people. They’ve lost most of their viewers. The final 10 start airing March 3rd, without Smollett. “Empire” will get some kind of happy ending so it can be rebooted or revisited sometime in the future. But Smollett’s character will not be part of the ending.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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