The FBI and US Postal Service are reportedly investigating threatening letter sent to Jussie Smollett

  • The FBI is working with the US Postal Service to look into whether “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett was involved in the threatening letter sent to him in January, sources told ABC News.
  • On January 22, a letter containing racist and homophobic threats and a white powder that was determined to be aspirin was addressed to Smollett at the Chicago’s Cinespace Studios, where “Empire” is filmed.
  • Smollett says he was attacked by two individuals on January 29. The openly gay actor claims the attackers made racist and homophobic comments, beat him up, poured a chemical on him, and tied a rope around his neck.
  • In a statement to INSIDER, the Chicago Police Department confirmed that information from the persons questioned had changed their trajectory, and the department hopes to speak to Smollett’s attorneys for another interview.

The FBI is working with the US Postal Service to look into whether “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett was involved in a threatening letter he recieved on January 22, sources told ABC News.

A letter containing racist and homophobic threats and a white powder that was determined to be aspirin was addressed to Smollett at the Chicago’s Cinespace Studios, where “Empire” is filmed.

Two federal officials told ABC News they are looking into whether Smollett played a role in the sending of that letter. INSIDER contacted both the FBI and USPS for confirmation and did not hear back prior to publication.

Smollett told police he was attacked by two individuals on January 29. The openly gay actor claims that the attackers made racist and homophobic comments, beat him up, poured a chemical on him, and tied a rope around his neck.

There was no security footage of the attack, but cameras did catch two individuals near the location of the alleged attack.

Last Wednesday, the Chicago Police Department took two brothers, who have been identified by news organisations as Olabinjo Osundario and Abimbola Osundairo, into custody. The Osundario brothers were questioned, but not charged and were released on Friday. According to CNN, they are cooperating with the investigation.

On Thursday, February 14, officials with the Chicago Police Department said they didn’t have reason to believe Smollett orchestrated the attack.

However, by Friday afternoon the department said that the investigation had “shifted,” and on Saturday, two law-enforcement sources told CNN that CPD believed Smollett may have staged the attack and paid the two brothers.

In a statement to INSIDER on Tuesday, the CPD confirmed that information from the persons questioned had changed its trajectory, and the department hopes to speak to Smollett’s attorneys for another interview.

On Saturday, Smollett’s attorneys Todd S. Pugh and Victor P. Henderson released a statement to CNN in response to reports that he staged the attack.

“As a victim of a hate crime who has cooperated with the police investigation, Jussie Smollett is angered and devastated by recent reports that the perpetrators are individuals he is familiar with,” the statement to CNN read. “He has now been further victimized by claims attributed to these alleged perpetrators that Jussie played a role in his own attack. Nothing is further from the truth and anyone claiming otherwise is lying.”

INSIDER contacted Smollett’s representative and his legal team for comment. We will update as necessary.

Smollett was reportedly cut from some “Empire” scenes this week while the investigation continues.

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