'Empire' actor expected to plead not guilty at hearing

'Empire' actor expected to plead not guilty at hearing

"Empire" actor Jussie Smollett pleaded not guilty in an IL courtroom on Thursday to disorderly conduct charges over allegations he staged a hate crime and lied to police.

The hearing in Cook County Circuit Court began with Judge Steven Watkins being assigned to oversee the case, including the trial, if it reaches that point.

After Smollett pleaded not guilty, Cook County Judge Steven Watkins granted him permission to travel to NY and California to consult with his attorneys, if he provides 48 hours notice to the court's pretrial services office. On Friday, a grand jury indicted Smollett on 16 felony counts of disorderly conduct - one for each supposed lie he told police - for allegedly staging his own hate crime.

The judge will then likely ask Smollett to enter a plea. The next time he is due in court is April 17.

Actor Jussie Smollett leaves the Leighton Criminal Court Building after attending a hearing on whether cameras will be allowed in future proceedings of his trial on felony charges, in Chicago, March 12.

Osundairo brothers claim Jussie paid them
Ola and Abel Osundairo claim they were paid by Jussie Smollett to pull off the alleged attack. Instagram

Police say Smollett, who is black and gay, staged the January 29 incident because he was unhappy with his salary on the Fox show and wanted to promote his career. Prosecutors claimed during a hearing that same day that Smollett had paid two brothers - Abimbola "Abel" Osundairo, who played Jamal's love interest on the Fox drama, and Olabinjo "Ola" Osundairo, an extra - to stage the attack.

Smollett, who is free on bond, maintains his innocence.

Watkins granted Smollett's request to be allowed to meet with lawyers in NY and California, but said the actor must give the court at least 48 hours' prior notice.

In a statement, Smollett's attorney Mark Geragos said while the indictment was "not unexpected". It was unclear Thursday if cameras had been allowed inside the courtroom.

Outside the courthouse on Thursday, about a dozen supporters gathered with signs, chanting that his prosecution was unjust. That is not a point that prosecutors seem to have pursued in their case and one that various sources at Fox and others close to Smollett have scoffed at.

Related News:



Most liked

Woman almost kicked off Thomas Cook flight over crop top
In another tweet, she said "a gent two rows behind me was wearing a vest top and shorts.yet clearly nothing was said to him". She then told BirminghamLive: "I have never felt so vulnerable or humiliated, it was horrific". "Put a f***ing jacket on".

'Fortnite' Streamer Ninja Made $1 Million to Promote 'Apex Legends'
In a message to fans, Respawn warned that not every leak is accurate, and that some discoveries will never make it into the game. We know this stuff is fun to dig up and speculate about, but you should not treat any of that info as a source of truth.

Judge refuses to lower R. Kelly's child support payments
She believes Kelly had a "suicide pact" with the women living in his home in the event something were to go awry. Kelly . "What I trusted was I raised my child right", her dad said.

Unvaccinated Kids Are Now Banned From Schools In Italy
It also fines parents of children between 6 and 16 years old about $560 if they can not prove their children have been vaccinated. The consequences for failing to comply with the legislation reportedly varies depending on how old the child is.

Elon Musk shoots down U.S. regulator's complaint about his Tesla tweet
According to a series of tweets from Musk himself, the Model Y will be an SUV "about 10% bigger than Model 3". First and foremost, the Model Y will be based on the same platform as the Model 3 sedan .

Tom Holland and Russo Bros reunite for heist movie 'Cherry'
British actor Tom Holland at the world premiere of 'Avengers: Infinity War , ' Hollywood, California, April 2018. AGBO acquired the rights to Nico Walker's book, " Cherry ", in August, with plans to shoot over the summer.

Pi Day 2019 deals in Hampton Roads
To find your local pizza restaurant, you can visit their website and use the store locator tool. Blaze Pizza is selling its pizzas, the customizable, personal-sized pies, for $3.14 Thursday.

Quinton de Kock on fire again as SA stroll past Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka have lost all eight ODIs under Malinga's captaincy and the veteran was dismissed in nearly embarrassing circumstances. Batting at number ten, he played the ball to midwicket. "The selectors have chose to add Reeza Hendricks to the squad".

Air pollution deaths double AFP, Paris
People living in Britain have one and a half years slashed from their life expectancy due to air pollution , warns new research. Of these deaths, between 40-80% were due to cardiovascular diseases (CVD), such as heart attacks and stroke.

Stocks rise on tame inflation outlook, dollar eases
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 0.2 percent after treading water for most part of the day. The U.S. central bank's rate-setting committee will issue its next policy statement following its March 19-20 meeting.

Tucker Carlson Doubles Down On Racism
Tucker Carlson: "Iraq is a crappy place filled with a bunch of, you know, semiliterate, primitive monkeys". Murdoch says, I do". "Fox News is behind us, as they have been since the very first day", Carlson said.

How An iPhone Saved A Man From Bow And Arrow Attack
When the unnamed man raised his iPhone to photograph the attacker, he fired an arrow at him that pierced right through the device. Police say the victim was taking a photo of the man, who is known to him, when he fired the ranged weapon, hitting the phone.

Lionel Messi: Cristiano Ronaldo had a magical night against Atletico Madrid
The draw for the quarter-finals will take place at the House of European Football in Nyon, Switzerland, on Friday. Messi was quoted by Marca as saying after the Lyon game: "What Cristiano Ronaldo and Juventus did was impressive".

Gambino crime kingpin Frank Cali shot dead in New York
Some of the indictments included murder, drug trafficking, robbery and extortion, according to The Mob Museum . The appointment allowed Cali to join the ranks of former leaders like John Gotti and Carlo Gambino .

Oil prices rise on OPEC's supply cuts and healthy demand
At 11:22 GMT, May WTI crude oil is trading $57.63, up $0.51 or +0.89% and May Brent crude oil is at $67.14, up $0.56 or +0.85%. In February, US crude oil exports hit an all-time high, with shipments amounting to over 3.6 million barrels a day.