LOS ANGELES — Chicago will sue actor Jussie Smollett for the costs of police overtime spent investigating his claims that he was the victim of a hate crime, which prosecutors say were false, a city official said on Thursday.
The lawsuit was being prepared after Smollett, 36, refused a demand by the city for $130,000, said Bill McCaffrey, a spokesman for the city’s Department of Law.
Smollett, who is black and gay, touched off a social media fire storm by telling police on Jan. 29 that two apparent supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump struck him, put a noose around his neck and poured bleach over him.
Last week prosecutors dropped all charges against Smollett, infuriating police and outgoing Mayor Rahm Emanuel. Prosecutors said they stood by the accusation but that an agreement by Smollett to forfeit his $10,000 bond was a just outcome.
The case file was sealed by a Chicago judge, which critics suggested was evidence of a cover-up.
The actor’s criminal defense attorney, Mark Geragos, could not be reached for comment.
On Monday, some 300 people, including off-duty Chicago police officers, took to the streets to protest, calling on Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx to resign over her handling of the case.
Foxx, who recused herself from the case before charges were filed, citing conversations she had with one of his relatives, has defended her actions and those of her prosecutors.
Smollett was written out of the final two episodes of “Empire” this season after he was charged with staging the hate crime. Fox executives have not said if he will return should the show be renewed for another year.
Was this article valuable?
Here are more articles you may enjoy.