Jussie Smollett has admitted changing his description of his attackers from ‘white’ to ‘pale’ under cross-examination from the special prosecutor at his trial where he became increasingly defensive on Tuesday, his second day of testimony, snapping at the prosecutor for using the N-word while reading aloud his texts and insisting he has permanent injuries from the incident.

Smollett took the stand again on Tuesday morning at his trial in Chicago where he is accused of lying to police about being the victim of a hate crime on January 29, 2019. 

Special prosecutor Dan Webb interrogated the 39-yearold, who became annoyed and snapped. The judge and jury were told that he was not willing to answer any questions and that there are scars to his face for his entire life.  

According to him, he originally assumed that his attackers were white. However, he later changed his story to state that they were pale and it was the right thing to do.

I didn’t want to make the assumption that they were white. They were paler skinned, so I changed my mind. He said it was the ‘responsible’ thing to change his description because he couldn’t be sure, adding: ‘They could’ve been a white person, they could have been a pale someone else.’

Asking him if he described them as “white” because it might attract more attention, his response was: “You would have to ask someone who did a fake hate offense.” 

Smollett was also defensive when asked about why he had sent private messages via Instagram to Abel Osundairo within hours of the attack. Prosecutors suggested that he was trying to fill him in on how his flight from New York City to Chicago was delayed. This would have a negative impact on the plans.  ‘N***** this is brutal. Still on this damn runway’ was one of them, and another was: ‘N***** finally made it.’  

Smollett used N-words in the messages. However, Webb was told Tuesday by Smollett not to use the N-word while reading out loud the text texts. This is out of respect for the ‘Each African American individual in the room. 

Webb (who is white) apologized. Smollett laughed and said, ‘Apology accepted, but it’s been misused a lot.  

Jussie Smollett arrives with his family on Tuesday morning before taking the stand again at his disorderly conduct trial. He maintains his innocence

Jussie Smollett arrived Tuesday morning with his family before taking part in the disorderly conduct case. He claims innocence

Smollett, on Tuesday, heading into court. He told the jury that he still has 'bruises' and 'bags' under his eyes from the attack

Smollett, Tuesday morning, making his way to court The jury heard him tell them that he had bruises, if not bags, under his eyes after the attack.

Smollett is depicted in a sketch from yesterday. On Tuesday, he became agitated with the prosecutor and the judge

Smollett as depicted in an illustration from yesterday. Smollett became upset with the judge, the prosecutor, and both of them on Tuesday. 

Smollett says brothers Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundauro (left and right) are lying in their claims he paid them to attack him. He says he and Abimbola (left) had a sexual relationship in the past but that Ola (right) 'creeped' him out

Smollett asserts that Olabinjo Osundauro’s brothers Abimbola, and Olabinjo Osundauro are lying about his claims they paid them to attack him. According to him, he was in a relationship with Abimbola left but Ola right ‘creeped out’ of it. 

Smollett said that, in addition to preparing for the assault, prosecutors also claimed Smollett and his brothers had been smoking marijuana together.  

Smollett would not confirm that Ola Osundairo and brother Abel were in the surveillance footage of the incident on January 29, 2019. Despite previously asserting that they were. 

‘I just don’t know. 

‘They’re liars, so.. they also said I had something to do with it and that’s not true,’ he said on Tuesday. 

In opening arguments, his attorneys stated that it was his brothers who attacked him, and they did so because they hate the man he is. 

The pair also claimed that they attacked him to scare him into employing them as security guards. 

Smollett said Tuesday that his injuries are more severe than what he had stated in his Good Morning America interview. He was speaking less than two months after the incident. 

The prosecutor snarked at him, saying he did not understand the meaning of a Hollywood interview. He replied: “Mr. Webb. I have a small scar that appears to be a bag under my eyes for the rest of your life. 

‘It’s absolutely a problem.’ 

Yesterday, Smollett stunned the court by saying he had’made out’ and’masturbated with Abimbola Olsundairo (one of the brothers) during a trip to a bathroom. 

Smollett told special prosecutor Dan Webb not to use the N word while reading out texts where he had used the word. Smollett asked him not to 'out of respect for every African American in the room'

Smollett advised Dan Webb, the special prosecutor for the case against Smollett, not to use N words in texts in which the word was used. Smollett requested that he not use the N word while reading out texts where he had used it.  

The jury was also shown this February 14 interview. Smollett said that he had on lots of make up to cover up his 'bruises' and 'injuries' which he says he'll have for the rest of his life and which 'will be a problem'

Also, the jury saw this interview on February 14, 2012. Smollett stated that he used a lot of makeup to hide his injuries and bruises, which he said he will continue using for his entire life.

He claims that he thought the couple were lighter skinned at the time they attacked him, and that it was difficult to see both of them properly. 

According to him, he believed they had staged an attack to get him thinking that he would need bodyguards to convince him and then to offer him the job. 

Last week’s testimony by the brothers revealed that Smollett had hired them to create the attack in order to increase his celebrity status. 

Tuesday’s statement by the actor was a resounding no. He claimed that it had never been the truth and that he dislikes attention. 

Monday was his first day with the police. He didn’t believe them. 

One, I am Black in America and do not trust police. I am also a well known figure and I’m openly gay … I want to play a boxer, I want to play a superhero… the moment I got beat I become a f****t who got his ass whooped,’ he told the court on Monday when asked why he didn’t call the cops.

According to the brothers, he did not want police involvement because he didn’t want them to reveal the lies he had orchestrated. 

The closing arguments will begin today or tomorrow. Smollett can be sentenced to a maximum 18-year term – for the six charges against him, he faces three years each – although it’s possible that he could receive probation. 


Jan. 22, 2019

Smollett is threatened with a hateful and homophobic letter from the Chicago studio where “Empire” was filmed. Later, police claim that Smollett wrote the letter.

The brothers said Smollett also sent himself this letter to the Fox studio where Empire is filmed a week before the attack. If he did, he faces another 5-10 years in prison on a federal mail fraud charge 

Smollett, according to the brothers, also wrote this letter to Fox studios where Empire is shot a week before the attack. He could face another five to ten years imprisonment on federal mail fraud charges. 

Police say Smollett cut his own cheek to make it look like he had suffered injuries in the attack

According to police, Smollett sliced his cheek in an attempt to appear as if he was suffering from injuries during the attack.

Jan. 29, 2019

Jussie Smollett reveals to police that two men attacked him in Chicago’s downtown area at 2 AM. 

Actor says men wrapped a rope around the actor’s neck, used homophobic slurs. They also poured unidentified substance onto him. 

According to police, Smollett is Black and Gay. He told detectives that the attackers shouted at him, “MAGA country”.

Jan. 30, 2019

Chicago police state that they have reviewed hundreds upon hours of footage from surveillance cameras, which includes Smollett’s walking through downtown. However, none of the footage shows Smollett being attacked. The police release photos of the two individuals they wish to interview, and call them “persons of concern”.

Feb. 1, 2019

Smollett issued a statement declaring that he was OK and that he had been working with authorities.

Feb. 2, 2019

Smollett, a West Hollywood musician, opened the concert by delivering an emotional speech. It stated that he was forced to participate in the event because his attackers were unable to win.

Police released this image of 'persons of interest' taken near the reported attack

This image shows a group of “persons of concern” taken close to the attack. Police have released it

Feb. 13, 2019

Chicago Police arrest two brothers from Nigeria at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. They were arrested after they learned that at least one of them worked for Empire

The police search the apartment and question them. 

Jussie Smollett on Good Morning America on February 14, 2019

Jussie Stmollett, Good Morning America February 14, 2019, 

February 20, 2019,

Smollett was charged 

Feb. 21, 2019

Chicago police claim that Smollett will surrender to avoid a felony charge for disorderly conduct. This can lead to up to three year imprisonment.

Eddie Johnson, Chicago Police Chief, says Smollett set up the attack to get publicity and unhappy about his salary. According to investigators, Smollett paid the brothers $3,500 to assist him.

Chicago Police Department  Superintendent Eddie T. Johnson tore through Smollett at a press conference on Thursday where he labeled him 'shameful' and 'despicable' 

On Thursday, Chicago Police Department Superintendent Eddie T. Johnson ripped into Smollett during a press conference. He called him’shameful and ‘despicable. 

Jussie Smollett is shown in his mugshot in February 2019

Jussie Mollett in his February 2019 mugshot

Feb. 22, 2019

Empire producers announce that Smollett’s character will be deleted from the two final episodes.

February 7, 2019,

Smollett was indicted by the Cook County Grand Jury on 16 counts for falsely reporting an offense

February 26, 2019

Smollett attorneys claim that he has been cleared of all charges stemming from his alleged lying to the police.

March 28, 2019

Officials from Chicago claim they are seeking $130,000 to reimburse Smollett for his investigation into the beating he suffered.

Tina Glandian, Tina’s lawyer for Smollett, claims that attackers may have worn ‘white faces’ on TV. That’s why he described them as light-skinned  

April 11, 2019,

Chicago filed a lawsuit to recover the costs of its investigation.

Tina Glandian, one of Jussie Smollett's lawyers

Abel Osundairo is shown in a 2016 video dressed up as the Joker

Tina Glandian (Jussie Smollett) suggested to police that Jussie told them his Nigerian attackers might have been white due to the fact they had’might be wearing whiteface’ or disguised. A 2016 video (right), showing Abel Osundairo disguised as Joker, is her evidence. 

Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx  recused herself from the Smollett case

Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx  recused herself from the Smollett case

April 23, 2019,

Smollett’s brothers filed a lawsuit for defamation against them.

Aug. 23, 2019

The judge names Dan Webb, a former U.S. Attorney to be the special prosecutor in an investigation into why Smollett was not charged.

Feb. 11, 2020

Webb claims that a grand jury has returned six counts against Smollett and accuses him of lying about police.

Feb. 24, 2020

Smollett pleads innocent to the reinstated charges.

Oct. 15, 2021

Smollett’s criminal case is dismissed by Judge James Linn, who sets the trial date for Nov. 29, 2009.  

November 29th, 2021Start of jury selection