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Report: Police focusing on Smollett, in latest twist
2019-02-17

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In the latest twist involving the Jussie Smollett case, a police-affiliated source has said Chicago authorities are investigating if the openly gay Empire actor paid two brothers ( identified by other media outlets as Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo ) to stage an attack on the actor in the Streeterville neighborhood on Jan. 29, The Chicago Tribune reported.

The brothers, 25 and 27, were released without charges Feb. 15—12 hours after police had called them "possible suspects." The men had been arrested Feb. 13 after detectives tracked them on surveillance cameras in the Streeterville area. Smollett has said two men shouted racial and homophobic slurs at him late last month, hit him and put a rope around his neck while yelling, "This is MAGA country!"

"Jussie Smollett is angered and devastated by recent reports that the perpetrators are individuals he is familiar with," read a statement from his attorneys, Todd S. Pugh and Victor P. Henderson. "He has 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."

The Tribune item is at www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-met-jussie-smollett-police-question-20190216-story.html.


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