Empire actor Jussie Smollett stated on Friday that he has been “consistent on every level” with the police throughout their investigation into what he says was a racist and homophobic attack on him in downtown Chicago earlier this week.
In his first public feedback since he says two masked males attacked him early Tuesday in what police are investigating as a potential hate crime, the black and overtly homosexual actor disputed assertions leveled on social media that he has been lower than cooperative and adjusted his story.
“I am working with authorities and have been 100% factual and consistent on every level,” he stated in a press release launched by an middleman a day after his household put out the same assertion. “Despite my frustrations and deep concern with certain inaccuracies and misrepresentations that have been spread, I still believe that justice will be served.”
Smollett, 36, instructed police that two masked males attacked him alongside a road within the Streeterville neighborhood as he was strolling dwelling from a restaurant. He stated they punched him, hurled racist and homophobic insults at him, poured an unknown chemical substance on him and wrapped a rope round his neck.
That space of downtown Chicago has many accommodations and eating places and has widespread surveillance video protection, and though police have discovered footage of Smollett making his method dwelling — together with video of him arriving at his constructing with a rope round his neck — they haven’t discovered footage of the attack or males becoming his description of his assailants.
In his assertion, Smollett expressed gratitude for the “outpouring of love and support” he has acquired for the reason that attack — even the president weighed in Thursday, calling it “horrible.” But critics have additionally taken to social media to recommend that Smollett modified his account of what occurred and hasn’t cooperated totally with investigators, pointing to what police say was Smollett’s refusal to let detectives undergo his telephone data to confirm that he was on a name together with his supervisor when he was attacked.
On Friday, the pinnacle of the police division, Superintendent Eddie Johnson, stated throughout an look on WLS-TV that regardless that detectives haven’t discovered video of the attack, Smollett has been “very cooperative and we have no reason at this point to think he’s not being genuine with us.”
Even although detectives are nonetheless amassing and sifting via footage from the numerous private and non-private surveillance cameras close to the positioning the place Smollett stated he was attacked, Johnson stated it wouldn’t be uncommon that such an attack wouldn’t be caught on video.
Although Chicago has intensive community of cameras, it doesn’t present full protection, police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi defined. Some cameras rotate and don’t constantly seize footage of the identical spots, so there’s a good probability that detectives could not discover footage of Smollett being attacked, he stated.
Guglielmi stated he’s optimistic that investigators will establish and find two folks they wish to discuss to as a result of grainy footage exhibits they had been within the space across the time Smollett says he was attacked.
“Somewhere out there there’s a camera that shows them arriving somewhere that they drove or walked to, or got on a bus,” he stated, stating that the 2 aren’t thought of suspects and that investigators wish to discuss to them within the hopes that they may have helpful info.
Smollett, who performs the homosexual character Jamal Lyon on the Fox tv present, can also be a musician and activist primarily targeted on LGBTQ points. Advocacy teams deliberate a Friday night rally in New York City in help of Smollett and LGBTQ survivors of violence.