After more than five hours of arguments and pleas for clemency, actor Jussie Smollett was sentenced to 30 months probation including 150 days in jail after being found guilty on five counts of faking a hate crime.

Smollett was ordered to pay $25,000 and more than $120,000 to the City of Chicago to cover the costs of investigating the bogus hate crime.

Judge James Linn chastises Smollett intensely, calling him “arrogant” and narcissistic for planning and executing a crime, then lying to police about it.

In an outburst, Smollett repeatedly told Cook County Judge James Linn, “I’m not suicidal” and if anything happens to him in jail, it won’t be because he’s suicidal.

The hearing opened Thursday afternoon March 10 with Smollett’s attorney, Tina Glandian, asking for a new trial and the overturning of his conviction. Their request was denied. The hearing extended into the late afternoon, with the two sides arguing over the fate of Smollett, who was dressed in an immaculate dark gray suit during the proceedings.

Letters read asking for clemency on Smollett’s sentence were sent by the Reverend Jesse Jackson Sr., NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson, Black Lives Matter and actors Samuel L. Jackson and Alfre Woodard .

In their letters, supporters reminded the court that Smollett had a clean background and committed a Class 4 offense that did not harm or kill anyone.

Smollett’s grandmother, Molly Smollett, 92, testified on behalf of her grandson. Jussie’s older brother, Jojo Smollett, read a statement that his brother had suffered enough damage to his reputation over the past three years.

There were also two witnesses who supported Smollett, said the actor was a generous and kind person who gave to charity and cared about young people in underserved communities.

But in his argument, Special Prosecutor Dan Webb did not recommend a specific prison sentence but said Smollett committed a serious crime that should not go unpunished. A day before the hearing, the City of Chicago Legal Department asked the court to require Smollett to reimburse the city for more than $130,000 in restitution for the costs of investigating the false allegations of the ‘actor.

This ends the final chapter of Jussie Smollett’s story with this sentence. The ‘Empire’ actor convicted of faking a hate crime in December.

Smollett was sentenced three years after filing a police report in January 2019 alleging he was brutally assaulted early in the morning in Chicago’s North Side neighborhood of Streeterville.

Smollett, who is openly gay, said two men punched, kicked, used racial and homophobic slurs, threw a chemical in his face and wrapped a noose around his neck . The noose was still around her neck when Chicago police attended her apartment after reporting the attack.

Police also said Smollett refused to turn over his phone and phone records for the investigation. The actor told police he was on the phone with his manager at the time of the attack.

Police, however, said Smollett was cooperating with the investigation and later gave investigators a PDF file containing partial phone records.

After investigating the attack, police arrested the Abimbola brothers and Olabinjo Osundairo, but they were released. The brothers testified against Smollett during his trial last December.

Police say Smollett recruited the brothers to stage an attack to further his career, a claim the actor denies.

During the trial, Abimbola Osundairo testified that Smollett showed him a photo of a letter he had received at the studio days earlier depicting a gun and a stick figure suspended by a noose. Osundairo said that after seeing the photo, Smollett told him to beat him.

Abimbola Osundairo then testified that Smollett specifically asked them to shout “Empire” and the pro-Trump slogan “MAGA,” along with slurs.

Osundairo told the jury he agreed to go with the plan because he felt indebted to Smollett, who got him a stand-in role on “Empire,” the former hit show on the Fox network.

Osundairo also gave a detailed account of how the alleged staged attack unfolded. He said Smollett drove to the north side and pulled the car into an alley near the brothers’ apartment, where Olabinjo Osundairo joined them.

A jury believed the brothers and prosecutors; Smollett, 39, was found guilty of five of the six charges against him, including disorderly conduct. He was found not guilty of aggravated bodily harm.

However, last month Smollett filed papers asking for either a new trial in Chicago or a not guilty verdict. In the 83-page document, Smollett claims his constitutional rights were violated when the court prevented his legal team from actively participating in the jury selection process.

Smollett and his lawyers argued that the court “made numerous trial errors before the trial and during the course of the trial.”

His lawyers also say they were not allowed to question potential jurors about any biases or “questionable impartiality” they might have toward Smollett in the high-profile case.

The documents describe a case where a juror informed the court that several members of his family were either current law enforcement or former law enforcement. The court did not investigate his statements further and did not allow Smollett’s attorneys to do so, the document says.

The actor’s defense team also said the evidence presented by prosecutors at trial was “insufficient and inconsistent such that no reasonable trier of fact could have found Mr. Smollett guilty beyond any reasonable doubt, and there is therefore evidence that the jury’s verdict was contrary to the clear weight of the evidence.

“As such, the Defendant now respectfully requests that his convictions be set aside or, in the alternative, that the Court grant the Defendant a new trial,” the filing reads.


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