Jussie Smollett Returns To Court To Enter Formal Plea
Getty Images

City Of Chicago Files Civil Suit Against Jussie Smollett For Refusing To Pay $130K

Chicago kept its promise to take legal action against Jussie Smollett after the Empire star refused to pay just over $130,106 to cover costs to the city for investigating what the actor insists was a hate crime against him.

The city filed a civil suit in the Circuit Court County Thursday (April 11), in hopes of recouping hundreds of thousands of dollars to cover “civil penalties, statutory treble damages, attorney’s fees and costs arising” from his alleged “false statements” to authorities following the January assault, which police later said was a hoax.

Smollett is accused of filing a “false police report claiming that he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack by unknown attackers.” According to the complaint, Smollett knew his attackers and “orchestrated the purported attack himself.”

Further in the legal documents, the city argues that Smollett became “friends” with his alleged attacker, Abimbola “Abel” Osundairo, in 2017. During the course of the friendship, Smollett and Osundairo “socialized and exercised together,” the complaint states. The documents also accuse the actor of “occasionally” asking Osundairo to help him obtain “recreational drugs.”

The documents claim Smollett sent Osundairo a text message on January 25, 2019, asking when he would be traveling to Nigeria with his brother. “Might need you help on the low. You around to meet up face to face,” Smollett allegedly wrote before driving to Osundairo’s apartment and taking him on a ride.

“During the ride, Defendant stated that he was unhappy with the way his employers handled a racist and homophobic letter he had allegedly received three days earlier, and as a result, he wanted to stage an attack where Abel would appear to batter him.”

The complaint adds that Osundairo commissioned his younger brother Olabinjo “Ola” Osundairo to help him, and that Smollett gave the brothers $100 to purchase “clothing and materials needed for the staged attack.” Smollett also wrote the brothers a $3,500 check to allegedly carry out the attack, but put in the memo that the payment was for, “5 week nutrition/workout program.”

When questioned by police, Smollett not only asserted that he was a victim but that the attack was caught on a nearby surveillance camera. However, the suit states that Smollett “purposely led” Chicago Police to “believe that his attackers were white, when in fact, Defendant knew that his attackers were the Osundairo Brothers.”

After an “extensive investigation,” which included obtaining GPS and cell phone records, video surveillance, bank records, and a store receipt, authorities concluded that Smollett lied about the story. Smollett, however, has maintained that he was a victim of an attack.

The 36-year-old actor was later charged with 16 felony charges that were dismissed last month.

Chicago's suit against Smollett requests that the court force him to pay a civil penalty of $1000 “for each false statement that he made to the city” along with “three times the amount of the damages that the city sustained,” in addition to “litigation and collection fees, and attorneys’ fees.”

From the Web

More on Vibe

Cardi B Snaps At 'The Shade Room' For Publicizing Negativity: 'It’s Trash'

Cardi B is tired of The Shade Room, and she let us know that fact by posting videos bashing them on social media.

The rapper took to Instagram to discuss her issues with the social media page posting negative things about the people she is associated with, including her husband Offset. The Migos member was reportedly mentioned on The Shade Room regarding his recent felony gun possession charges.

“Everybody that they know that I’m cool with, they always try to get them set up for people to talk sh*t,” she said. "Offset donated 25K to the Ellen foundation for the kids in Africa. Did The Shade Room post it? No… are they posting any positive sh*t and investment talk that he’s been talking about in his interviews? No. But they sure post the way he had drama with his baby mom. They sure posting about his court cases, right?"

She continues by stating that she understands that blogs will be blogs, and she doesn’t want them to only post the positive aspects of celebrities’ lives. However, Cardi says that there is a “hate campaign” and bias against Quality Control and those associated with her via TSR, and she wants it to end.

“That sh*t is getting wack,” she continues. “It’s trash. How do people want us to change? For what? Why change? Y’all don’t post the change, y’all don’t post the good, y’all don’t post the accomplishments. Y’all post the f**k sh*t. So, what the f**k?”

She concludes by stating that black blogs capitalize on black drama and negativity occurring in the community, which causes white publications to follow suit.

“Stop claiming that y’all for the people, when y’all fuel drama in between these artists,” she states.

Continue Reading
Getty Images

R. Kelly Accuser Wins Civil Case Against Singer By Default Judgment

R. Kelly was a no-show in court today (April 24), after he was sent a summons to appear. Due to the singer's absence, the woman accusing him of sexual abuse in a civil case won by a default judgment. The judge presiding over the case determined that Kelly and his legal team ignored the woman's civil suit.

Per The Chicago Tribune, a woman who accused Kelly of sexually abusing her in the '90s filed a suit in February alleging that the musician had an inappropriate sexual relationship with her when she was 16 years old. She is now 36, and is identified in court documents at H.W.

Kelly was reportedly served the summons last month during his brief stint in a Cook County jail cell for missed child support payments. However, the woman's attorneys claim that he never filed an appearance in the lawsuit.

"Judge Moira Johnson granted the attorneys’ request Tuesday to enter a judgment against Kelly," the Tribune reports. "That could still be reversed if Kelly got an attorney involved in the suit. If that doesn’t happen, Kelly could be ordered to pay damages as soon as next month when the alleged victim is expected to testify about her allegations against the singer."

During H.W.'s May 8 court appearance, she will reportedly discuss her alleged relationship and encounters with Kelly in detail.

Kelly faces a maximum of up to 70 years behind bars. He is charged with 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse involving four separate victims, three of whom were underage during the time of their alleged encounters.

Continue Reading
Getty Images

Lizzo Will Appear In 'Hustlers' Alongside Cardi B And Jennifer Lopez

Lizzo continues to make waves as a musician, instrumentalist, body-positivity icon and booty-shaker extraordinaire. The artist– whose major-label debut Cuz I Love You is receiving praise from listeners and critics alike– will have a chance to put her twerking skills to the test.

According to reports, the Minnesota transplant is set to join the likes of Jennifer Lopez, Cardi B and Keke Palmer in the already-stacked lineup for the upcoming film, Hustlers. Deadline reports that this is Lizzo’s first live-action film, and her second film overall. She’ll be voicing a character in the upcoming animated musical film, Uglydolls.

Hustlers, which is set to be released by September 2019, is inspired by an article published in New York Magazine in 2016, which “follows a crew of savvy former strip club employees who band together to turn the tables on their Wall Street clients.”

Additional actresses set to appear in the film include Fresh Off The Boat’s Constance Wu, Riverdale’s Lili Reinhart, Julia Stiles, Transparent’s Trace Lysette, Mercedes Ruehl, dancer Mette Towley and Orange Is The New Black’s Madeline Brewer.

Continue Reading

Top Stories