Jussie Smollett Declares 2019 Attack “Was No Hoax”, Says He Was Victim Of $2 Million Shakedown And Had A Sexual Relationship With One Of His Accusers

Jussie Smollett Declares 2019 Attack “Was No Hoax”, Says He Was Victim Of $2 Million Shakedown And Had A Sexual Relationship With One Of His Accusers

Jussie Smollett has insisted to the Chicago courtroom where he is being tried that the violent attack against him in early 2019 “was no hoax.”

On the stand in his own defense on Monday, the ex-Empire star called the assault by men hurling punches and homophobic and racial slurs and shouting “MAGA country” to be “something out of Looney Tune adventures.”

Asked directly by special prosecutor Daniel Webb in cross-examination if he wanted the police to treat his attack as a “hate crime,” Smollett replied that he “wanted police to solve a crime that had happened to me”, going on to add that it was “fully false, 100 percent false” that he planned or paid anyone to stage an attack on him.

Facing half a dozen felony charges spiraling out of the alleged hate crime that soon afterward was characterized by Chicago police, politicians and prosecutors as probably a PR stunt, Smollett spoke on Day 5 of his trial to offer his version of what really went down in the cold early hours nearly three years ago.

The trial started on November 29. Smollett entered a not-guilty plea in March 2019.

If found guilty, the actor who played Jamal Lyon on Empire for five seasons could be sentenced to as much as three years behind bars. An edict of actual incarceration from Cook County Judge James Linn seems unlikely, but isn’t impossible in a trial that has been full of drama and characters straight out of the Fox primetime soap created by Lee Daniels and Danny Strong.

Smollett also testified that he had a sexual relationship with one of the Osundairo brothers, Abimbola. He said he met Abimbola in 2017 while visiting a nightclub. After a few hours of partying, the two adjourned to Chicago’s famed gay bathhouse, Steamworks. Smollett says that he and Abimbola then began using cocaine and had a sexual encounter.

“We were in a club, you go to the bathroom, go to a stall, do a bump, do a bump and then just kind of keep going in and then we went to the bathhouse,” Smollett told the court. “We did more drugs and made out,” he elaborated, adding that the pair were “touching and things like that.”

The two returned to Steamworks another day, and this time, the relationship became more sexual. “We went alone this time. We got a private room again, we did drugs and made out a little bit and this time, we masturbated together,” he said.

Abimbola Osundairo, for his part, has denied any sexual relationship or encounters with Smollett.

Abimbola (left) and his brother Olabinjo Osundairo

Under questioning by his own attorney Nenye Uche, Smollett not only laid out the sequence of events of the attack of January 29, 2019, but also the aftermath. “I’ve lost my livelihood,” the performer admitted of being cut from Empire and his music career as his story of that chilly night unraveled under the scrutiny of the cops and the courts.

One theory floated by law enforcement and Webb is that Smollett paid acquaintances Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo $3,500 to stage an attack because the actor didn’t feel an actual threatening letter sent to Smollett via Empire received enough attention.

That balloon was effectively shot down by Empire EP Brett Mahoney, who told the courtroom that on-set security was increased after the correspondence was brought to the production’s attention. The showrunner for the final seasons of Empire and a longtime vocal supporter of Smollett’s, Mahoney continued in his testimony by claiming the actor declined extra personal security and a driver because “he didn’t want a lot of attention” around the letter, according to the media pool at the trial.

The actor also told Uche during his testimony that he still “didn’t believe it was true” that the Osundairo brothers were his actual assailants, despite what they and the police say.

Smollett was equally blunt in answering why his manager — and not the actor himself — who called the police after the alleged attack. “One, I am a Black man in America — I do not trust police,” Smollett said. “I am also a well-known figure, and I’m openly gay. … The moment I got beat, I become a [homophobic slur] who got his ass whooped.”

On the second day of his testimony, Smollett told the courtroom that he was not only a victim of an attack on the streets of Chicago nearly three years ago, but a potential shakedown too, thereby reigniting a $2 million bombshell accusation against Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo.

The brothers are the prosecution’s primary witnesses that the January 29, 2019 attack on Smollett wasn’t a hate crime but a set-up by the star himself. Right near the end of his long stint on the stand, Smollett declared the brothers sought $1 million each to “go away” and tell authorities that the assault wasn’t faked.

Held by Chicago Police investigators for nearly two days back in early 2019, in the final hour before they were to be released or charged, the brothers broke down and told the cops that Smollett paid them to rough him up that cold Windy City morning. A check for $3,500 for Smollett, surveillance footage of the brothers buying rope and more supplies, contradictory statements and a timeline of texts and others interactions between the Osundairos and the actor have laid the foundation for the prosecution’s case.

This is far from the first time the supposed shakedown has been mentioned in the Smollett case. It came up in previous litigation and was denied on the stand by Abimbola Osundairo last week.

However, today was the first time Smollett has made the accusation directly – a clear move to impact the jury.

As Smollett also noted Tuesday, the money was never paid.

Telling his side of the attack story publicly for the first time this week in his own defense, Smollett’s move to mention the multi-million-dollar payoff was seen as so serious that special prosecutor Webb tried immediately to have it stricken from the record. Cook County Judge James Linn denied the request, but he did make a point of mentioning that he was under the impression Smollett was contacted directly by the Osundairo brothers for the money.

On Tuesday, under re-direct questioning from defense lawyer Nenye Uche, Smollett said it was the brother’s “lawyer or agent or agency” who “communicated” to his legal representatives for the cash.

After their client spent around eight hours on the stand in total, Smollett’s defense rested their case this morning. Closing arguments are set to start today and then the jury of eight men and seven women will begin their deliberations.

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  1. Colossus
    December 08, 10:14 Reply

    Wait, this case is still on? See drama sha, so one brother is gay? Let it end please so a movie can be made out of this

  2. Pjay
    December 08, 13:14 Reply

    So this might well shape up to be a kito story? Interesting!

  3. trystham
    December 08, 20:30 Reply

    Yunno. I was telling a tweep. Let him sha be exonerated. Let them show how dangerous Nigerians are to gay ppl

    • Pink Panther
      December 09, 07:27 Reply

      Yup. That conclusion is a twist I didn’t expect.

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