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Alberto E. Rodriguez

Jussie Smollett's Attorneys Deny Actor Paid $3,500 To Orchestrate Attack

"Nothing is further from the truth and anyone claiming otherwise is lying."

 

Sources close to the Jussie Smollett investigation have spoken with several media outlets and allege new evidence shows the Empire actor may have orchestrated the attack, and even paid men $3,500 to go through with it.

The two men who are brothers were arrested Wednesday and released Friday (Feb. 15) without charges. Both men are cooperating fully with Chicago police, and authorities found records they purchased a rope at a local hardware store, which was used during the attack.

Smollett's attorneys, Todd S. Pugh, and Victor P. Henderson, quickly denied the claim made by authorities.

"As a victim of a hate crime who has cooperated with the police investigation, Jussie Smollett is angered and devastated by recent reports that the perpetrators are individuals he is familiar with," the statement read. "He has now been further victimized by claims attributed to these alleged perpetrators that Jussie played a role in his own attack. Nothing is further from the truth and anyone claiming otherwise is lying."

On Jan. 29, Smollett was leaving a Subway fast-food restaurant when the actor alleges to have been attacked by two men who beat him, poured bleach on him and tried to hang a rope around his neck. The 35-year-old entertainer, who identifies as gay, said one of the men shouted "This is MAGA country" as well as other racial and homophobic slurs.

Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said one of the men appeared on Empire and have past affiliation with Smollett.

During his interview with Robin Roberts on Good Morning America Thursday (Feb. 14), Smollett expressed frustration about not being believed. Sunday morning (Feb. 17) the hashtag 'JussieSmollettHoax' trended on Twitter. The Internet was split with many offering a digital "I told you so" due to the reports, while others, particularly members of the black LGBTQ community, questioning why many were quick to believe the word of law enforcement.

https://twitter.com/angryblkhoemo/status/1096967004517515266

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J. Cole's Dreamville Festival Taps SZA, Big Sean, 21 Savage And More

After 2018's Dreamville Festival was canceled due to Hurricane Florence, J. Cole has returned with a similar lineup to make up for the past cancelation. Working with SZA, Nelly, and more, the two artists add to a stacked roster of old and new faces.

Cole himself is expected to perform alongside Big Sean, 21 Savage, Teyana Taylor, as well as Dreamville cohorts Bas, Ari Lennox, Omen, Lute, and more.

The one-day event will take place April 6 at Dorothea Dix Park in Raleigh, North Carolina. For a limited time, tickets for the festival will be available for purchase for $119, while VIP packages will include JV VIP ($240), Varsity VIP ($289), and MVP VIP ($449). Tickets can be purchased at DreamvilleFest.com.

We backkkkkkkkk.

DREAMVILLE FEST 2019 APRIL 6TH 🌻 RALEIGH, NC

TICKETS ON SALE AT https://t.co/[email protected] @dreamvillE pic.twitter.com/jDP7Iew5Ce

— J. Cole (@JColeNC) March 19, 2019

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Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Myspace Loses All Music Posted Before 2016

After losing the bulk of its users to other budding social media platforms, the once popular Myspace reportedly lost every single piece of content uploaded before 2016, including songs, photos, and videos, BBC reports.

According to Myspace, the site is blaming a faulty server migration for its large deletions, which is believed to have happened more than a year ago. This is when members started reporting that access to certain content older than 2016 was made unavailable.

More than 50 million tracks from 14 million artists have been lost, including music introduced by the "Myspace Generation." Beyond the music, pictures and videos stored on the server are nowhere to be found.

Though Facebook's craze led to a decrease in users, the rebrand, which centered around giving artists a place to build a platform, has been made virtually obsolete by years worth of content that's no longer.

Myspace published a statement on the site apologizing for the incident: "As a result of a server migration project, any photos, videos, and audio files you uploaded more than three years ago may no longer be available on or from Myspace. We apologize for the inconvenience and suggest that you retain your backup copies. If you would like more information, please contact our data protection officer.”

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Jeff Kravitz

Comedienne Jess Hilarious Under Fire For Xenophobic Comments Toward Sikhs

Jess Hilarious came under fire Sunday (March 17) after she uploaded a video showcasing relief after four Sikhs were removed from her flight. The Lil Rel star defended her statements and said she was scared.

"If I'm scared I'm scared. F**k y'all. F**k how y'all feel," Jess said. "Y'all mad at me because I don't side with any other black person, because I don't side with every other race. F**k y'all. I feel how I feel. I felt threatened and that was it. F**k y'all, and I'm not flying there. We were evacuated, bitch. Why? Why? with no technical difficulties or nothing."

The Internet quickly sent the comic a digital side eye for her xenophobic comments, which came two days after 51 Muslim men and women were gunned down in New Zealand. The youngest of which was 3-year-old Mucaas Ibrahim.

what if Jess Hilarious’ middle name is Notthat?

— Jamal (@JamalJimoh) March 17, 2019

A day after Muslims were ambushed and murdered while praying (death toll now at 51), Jess Hilarious hops on Al Gore’s internet to brag about+defend getting 4 people with turbans kicked off a flight because she didn’t feel safe.

— Candice Marie Benbow (@CandiceBenbow) March 17, 2019

Xenophobia is really disgusting.

The hate for Muslims is disgusting and Jess hilarious is trash and not worthy of a platform. https://t.co/qotZ9AwMLO

— Mistress George M Johnson (@IamGMJohnson) March 17, 2019

One Twitter user, a DJ who goes by the name DJ The Gypsy pointed out Jess' comments run rampant within other parts of the black community.

Jess Hilarious’ anti-Muslim rhetoric sheds light on a very important topic; Islamophobia within the black Christian community

— dylan (@dylanthegypsy) March 17, 2019

The backlash Jess merited did, however, highlight not everyone shared her sentiments.

https://twitter.com/anildash/status/1107315609921093632

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