Jury Selection in Jussie Smollett Case to Start in November


CHICAGO — Jury choice within the trial of the actor Jussie Smollett will begin Nov. 29, a Cook County decide said at a listening to on Tuesday.

Mr. Smollett is charged with disorderly conduct in what prosecutors say was the staging of an assault in 2019. Mr. Smollett has pleaded not responsible.

The case started on Jan. 29, 2019, when Mr. Smollett alleged that two males assaulted him in a racist and homophobic assault as he was returning home from a sandwich store. He said that he was overwhelmed, had an “unknown chemical substance” poured on him, was called racist and homophobic slurs and had a rope put round his neck.

On Feb. 20, 2019, the Cook County state’s lawyer, Kim Foxx, charged Mr. Smollett with submitting a false police report. The expenses were dropped, and in August of that yr, a decide appointed a particular prosecutor, Dan Ok. Webb, to the case. (The decide said Ms. Foxx hadn’t adopted process earlier within the case.)

When he accomplished his investigation, Mr. Webb said that Mr. Smollett was being indicted once more, on six felony counts of disorderly conduct. Mr. Webb also found that whereas Ms. Foxx’s workplace didn’t violate the legislation in dealing with the case, it did abuse its discretion in dropping the costs and he found that the workplace put out false or deceptive public statements about why it did so.

Mr. Smollett and his attorneys (there were eight present at a video convention listening to on Tuesday) have been in entrance of Cook County Circuit Court Judge James B. Linn on a number of events. But a date was only set now due to the pandemic, the quantity of discovery within the case, and a dispute over who may signify Mr. Smollett.

In March 2020, one lawyer, Nenye Uche, filed paperwork to affix Mr. Smollett’s protection team, but Mr. Webb objected, citing a battle of interest as a result of, shortly after the Jan. 29 incident, Mr. Uche had interviewed two brothers — Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo — who could possibly be witnesses for the prosecution.

In July, Judge Linn dominated against Mr. Webb, saying that Mr. Uche may signify Mr. Smollett but couldn’t query the brothers at trial.

The decide set the date for jury choice after attorneys met in a breakout room for half-hour. Before jury choice, although, on Oct. 15, there shall be a listening to on a new movement to dismiss the case.

Mr. Smollett didn’t reply to a request for comment.

Mr. Smollett also faces a lawsuit from the City of Chicago, claiming the actor owes town more than $130,000 to cowl police extra time prices incurred whereas they investigated what they say is a hoax.

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