Saturday, 23 February, 2019

'Empire' actor defends redacted phone records

Jussie Smollett's neighbors cast doubt on his attack story Unidentified Man Claims Jussie Smollett is Lying About Attack
Stacy Diaz | 13 February, 2019, 01:55

Almost two weeks after "Empire" star Jussie Smollett claimed he was the victim of a racist, homophobic attack, cops have yet to identify any suspects - and some people in his tony Chicago neighborhood are growing skeptical.

An unidentified patron at Lizzie McNeill's Irish Pub, a bar located in the same neighborhood as Smollett 's building, told the Post that the actor's claims are "a lie" because "Chicago is the most liberal city around".

The investigation into the attack on Jussie Smollett continues.

Smollett told police he was on the phone with his manager Brandon Z. Moore during the alleged racist and homophobic attack he endured on January 29.

Although police have since asked for help from the public in identifying two persons of interest from surveillance recordings near the site of the attack near the time it occurred. He also said in an earlier statement that he'd been "100% factual and consistent on every level" when working with police.

"We have no reason to doubt the statements but for a criminal investigation we need to independently confirm the phone records", Chicago police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said.

Smollett, who is black and openly gay, told police that while walking home to his apartment earlier this month, he was accosted by two men who hurled racial and homophobic slurs at him.

"I don't believe it happened the way he said it did", Muhammad said.

Meanwhile, the New York Post reports that an empty hot sauce bottle filled with a clear liquid was found near the scene of the reported attack, and that it smelled like bleach. I don't believe it, not around here.

According to police, Smollett was found with stained clothing and "white rope draped around" his neck, as he explained an unknown chemical, presumably bleach, was poured on him in the attack.

However, according to Chicago POlice Superintendent Eddie Johnson, while Smollett's case is being treated as a hate crime, he said the actor will be held accountable if he filed a false report. They also claimed the "Empire" actor "refused" to give the cops his phone.

The AP added that Chicago has one of the nation's most sophisticated and extensive video surveillance systems, including thousands of cameras on street poles, skyscrapers, buses, and in train tunnels - and that police said such cameras have helped them make thousands of arrests.

Threatening letters directed at Smollett were reportedly sent to Fox Studios in Chicago a week before.