Inside Jussie Smollett's Unsealed Case File: Unseen Evidence Photos, Texts, Emails
Chicago police released hundreds of pages worth of reports on the Jussie Smollett case after the seal was lifted, revealing never-before-seen photo evidence, text messages, and e-mail threads.
Almost 500 pages of documents were released last week which reveal more detail in the case that ended in controversy after prosecutors dropped all charges against Smollett for falsely reporting himself as a victim of hate crime.
The release comes after a Cook County judge lifted the seal on Smollett's court records, which now allows the public to look through piles of evidence that implicate the actor.
Piles of Evidence
It was Smollett's attorney that got the file sealed in March, the same time his charges were dropped. The seal was granted due to its content being subject to public records requests, but now they see no need to seal it. Prosecutors are also expected to release internal documents in the next couple of days.
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Police reports obtained detailed how Smollett sought the help of Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo, who staged the hate crime last January. The file includes details of Jussie reportedly wanting just one brother to punch him, as he did not trust the other brother.
“Smollett was also clear that only (one brother) was to do the hitting because Smollett did not trust (the other brother) to pull his punches."
The reports also reviewed phone and financial records, which showed the "Empire" actor discussing drugs with one of the brothers before January 29. In the end, he and the two brothers were not charged with any drug crimes based on the messages.
Investigators revealed that the phone records had Smollett requesting one of the brothers to supply him with "weed, molly, or Whitney," which is slang for ecstasy and cocaine.
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On July 1, 2018, Smollett and one brother exchanged messages on how the actor could obtain "Whitney" and pay for it.
A detective also wrote that Smollett has been making odd transactions in his Venmo account, which he described as "payments for legitimate expenses."
In September 2018, a text exchange confirmed that he was buying ecstasy from the brothers, but pegged it as "training." Likewise, a $3,500 check made to the brothers to help him stage the attack was pegged as a personal fitness training payment.
Jussie was also asked by detectives to retrace his steps that night. When asked why his sweater did not get dirty, he said he fell on the snow.
When asked to sign a medical release and turn over his phone, Smollett also declined. He also tried to stop detectives from asking for a buccal swab for police to try and find his DNA on the rope on his neck.
The Shift in Investigation
Jussie Smollett was tagged as the main suspect in his own hate crime after the Chicago Police Department shifted their investigation. While the actor vehemently denied ever orchestrating the attack, police records say otherwise.
The release of documents can ultimately re-open the case for Smollett again, especially with more people obtaining information that implicates him further.
View 491 pages worth of evidence here.