Jussie Smollett Indicted by Special Prosecutor

February 11, 2020

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- Former "Empire" co-star Jussie Smollett, who allegedly faked a hate-crime attack on himself last year before charges were dropped, has been indicted by a grand jury, the special prosecutor who re-examined the case said Tuesday.

The grand jury returned a six-count indictment accusing actor Smollett of lying to Chicago police.

Special Counsel Dan Webb was appointed to look into the Cook County State's Attorney's handling of the controversial Smollett case. His options included filing fresh charges against the actor and musician.

It was just over a year ago when Smollett claimed he was attacked by two men who yelled racist and homophobic slurs at him and placed a noose around his neck. The attack allegedly occurred overnight in subzero temperatures in the Streeterville neighborhood. 

Chicago police investigated the high-profile incident and said it was a hoax. Smollett, who is black and openly gay, organized the fake attack as a way to draw attention and sympathy, they said.

Smollett had been charged with disorderly conduct, but the charges were dropped by State's Attorney Kimberly Foxx. Critics say Smollett received special treatment, and the issue has dogged Foxx as she seeks re-election.