- Jussie Smollett returned to the “Empire” set hours after posting bond and being released from jail after he was charged with filing a false police report, according to multiple outlets.
- Police say Smollett staged a racist and homophobic attack against him to raise his profile because he was “dissatisfied with his salary.”
- TMZ reported that Smollett told people on set he was innocent, and said: “I would never do this to any of you, you are my family.”
- Smollett’s lawyers also say that Smollett is innocent, and accused Chicago police of victimizing him.
Jussie Smollett reportedly returned to the set of his television show “Empire” shortly after being arrested, charged, and bailed over allegations that he staged racist and homophobic against himself.
Multiple outlets reported that Smollett was seen on-set Thursday, hours after appearing in court at a bail hearing.
According to TMZ, Smollett told people there that he is innocent, and asked people to believe believe him and reject accusations by police that he orchestrated the attack up.
TMZ’s report said Smollett addressed everyone on set, saying: “I’m sorry I’ve put you all through this and not answered any calls. I wanted to say I’m sorry and, you know me, I would never do this to any of you, you are my family.
“I swear to God, I did not do this.”
The actor’s future on “Empire,” a Fox show, is unclear, and executives at the company say they have yet to make a decision. Smollett, who is black and gay, plays a gay character on the show.
“We understand the seriousness of this matter and we respect the legal process,” it said in a statement to INSIDER. “We are evaluating the situation and we are considering our options.”
Smollett, 36, was arrested after he turned himself into the police on charges of disorderly conduct and filing a false police report. If convicted, he could face up to three years in prison.
He will next appear in court on March 14.
Smollett alleged in January that he was attacked by two masked men who shouted racist and homophobic slurs at him and tied a rope around his neck.
But police now believe that he staged the attack because he was dissatisfied with his salary, and thought the attack would raise his public profile. They accuse him of paying two men $US3,500 to take part.
Chicago Police Department Supt. Eddie Johnson said that Smollett “took advantage of the pain and anger of racism to promote his career.”
“This stunt was orchestrated by Smollett because he was dissatisfied with his salary,” Johnson said.
He said Smollett managed to “slap everyone in his city in the face by making these false claims.”
Smollett’s lawyers said that he maintains his innocence and called him a man of “impeccable character and integrity,”The Associated Press reported.
They accused the Chicago Police Department of putting on an “organised law enforcement spectacle” and say the department violated the presumption of his innocence.
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