CHICAGO, IL—Chicago detectives now believe the alleged attack on actor Jussie Smollett may have been staged.
New evidence revealed the noose used on Smollett’s neck was purchased by Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo prior to the attack January 29. The Osundairo brothers were released after being taken into custody by authorities on Friday, February 15.
Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi indicated on Saturday, February 16, the he could not comment on new information, but detectives have shifted focus in the case.
An ongoing investigation previously linked the two Nigerian brothers with ties to the FOX show “Empire,” where they appeared as extras. Police collected the assailants at O’Hare Airport in Illinois. They were booked for battery charges on February 13.
Smollett reported that he was assaulted last month during the late night hours in Chicago near his home. He indicated he was on the phone with music manager Brandon Moore, at the time of the attack and claimed his attackers were homophobic racist white men to TMZ.
He reported to Chicago police that the suspects poured bleach on him during the attack and put a noose on his neck and that his assailants shouted “(MAGA) country,” Make American Great Again; a slogan used in during Donald Trumps’ 2016 Presidential campaign and today.
Chicago law enforcement nvestigators said, “The Empire cast doesn’t believe the brothers could commit such heinous crimes.They are close to the star and supports the LGBTQ community.”