Abel and Ola Osundairo, the brothers who allegedly attacked Jussie Smollet, seem to have taken a new turn in career choice. The two fitness buffs and would be actors have decided to go into the comedy business to showcase their acting abilities. The new move, sources say, is an attempt to re-enter the showbiz industry after opportunities dried up in the wake of the Smollet scandal.
Meanwhile, a grand jury has revived the criminal case against Jussie Smollett. The Empire actor was indicted for the second time for allegedly staging a hate crime against himself in 2019 in Chicago. However, on March 6th, the Illinois Supreme Court declined to throw out the new charges and gave no explanation for its decision. Smollet has always maintained his innocence.
Jussie’s story has been something of a ping-pong match from the beginning. On January 29, 2019, Jussie Smollett told police he was attacked by two men. According to Smollett, they hurled racial and homophobic slurs and wrapped a rope around his neck. A police investigation began and Smollett received an outpouring of public support. On February 13, police picked up the Osundairo brothers as suspects. Around this time, reports began circulating that the attack was a hoax. The Osundairo brothers were released and the police said their investigation had shifted. Police began investigating Smollett before arresting him on a felony charge of disorderly conduct for filing a false police report. Police said they had evidence that Smollett paid the Osundairo brothers. Producers of Empire announced they were writing Smollett’s character out of the season. On March 26, charges against Smollett were dropped. Then the lawsuits began: the City of Chicago sued Smollet, Smollett countersued the city, the Osundairos filed a defamation lawsuit against Smollett.
But the story didn’t end there. In August, a judge appointed former U.S. Attorney Dan Webb as special prosecutor to look into the Smollett case. On February 11, a grand jury returned a six-count indictment against Smollett.
This is a complex story involving a number of factors and highlights various injustices. It has also unquestionably been politicized by many, including Donald Trump. Smollett’s attorney stated, that the timing of the new charges “on the eve of the Cook County State’s Attorney election is clearly all about politics not justice.” Chicago’s history of corruption and racial disparity is also worth noting.
Smollett faced nothing but support early on in this saga but that support has largely dried up. His family alone remains firmly on his side, never wavering in their belief in his account of events.