jussie-smollett-headshot jussie-smollett-headshot
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

From the Web

More on Vibe

Winston Duke photographed on March 18, 2018 in New York City by Stacy-Ann Ellis.

Winston Duke: Photos From The VIBE Cover Shoot

Winston Duke talks his role in Us, his "Trinbagonian" roots and his journey in Hollywood.

Enjoy photos from the shoot below.

Continue Reading
Getty Images

Barack And Michelle Obama Congratulate Jennifer Lopez And Alex Rodriguez On Engagement

The news of Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez's recent engagement has received some serious love from the former POTUS and FLOTUS.

Taking to Twitter to post the presidential sincerity, A-Rod showed off the handwritten note from Michelle and Barack Obama. “This means the world to us. #44," the engaged couple captioned the image. The note also offered marital advice to the couple.

“Jennifer & Alex -- Michelle and I just wanted to congratulate you on your engagement. After 26 years together, we can say that whatever challenges life may bring, sharing them with someone you love makes it all better. All the best, Barack Obama.”

This means the world to us. #44 pic.twitter.com/TyIQTMAOpW

— Alex Rodriguez (@AROD) March 22, 2019

3.9.19✨♥️

A post shared by Jennifer Lopez (@jlo) on Mar 12, 2019 at 9:21am PDT

Earlier this month (March 9), Rodriguez proposed to Lopez with a diamond ring reportedly worth more than a million dollars. The pair dated for two years.

Continue Reading
Kylie Jenner attends the 61st Annual GRAMMY Awards at Staples Center on February 10, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for The Recording Academy)

Kylie Jenner Doubles Down On Being Crowned A "Self Made" Billionaire

The premise of "self-made" and its interpretation when it comes to privileged celebrities has been a huge debate. When Kylie Jenner was named Forbes' youngest self-made billionaire, debates were raised due to her timeline in the limelight and her wealthy family. The 21-year-old defended her title, explaining how she doesn't fall into any ofter category.

"There’s really no other word to use other than self-made because that is the truth," she said in Q&A with Interview Magazine's German edition. "That is the category that I fall under," she started.

She acknowledged how her fan base equated to her success but refuted claims that she used her family's money to jump-start her wildly successful Kylie Cosmetics line.

"Although, I am a special case because before I started Kylie Cosmetics, I had a huge platform and lots of fans. I did not get money from my parents past the age of 15. I used 100 percent of my own money to start the company, not a dime in my bank account is inherited… and I am very proud of that."

Earlier this month (March 5) the mother-of-one officially surpassed Mark Zuckerberg as the youngest person to reach billionaire status, when Kylie Cosmetics hit a billion dollars in revenue.

Continue Reading

Top Stories