After being found guilty in December on five counts relating to staging a hate crime against himself and falsely reporting it to authorities, gay actor Jussie Smollett, 39, is now asking for a retrial.
According to TMZ, Smollett’s lawyers have filed an 83-page motion claiming his constitutional rights were violated when the court prevented his legal team from actively participating in jury selection.
Related: Juror in Smollett trial reveals what convinced them of actor’s guilt
News of the filing comes a couple of days after Cook County’s Judge James Linn said that Smollett would be sentenced March 10, and that he was allowing cameras to be present at the sentencing.
In his new filing, Smollett points to his lawyers not being allowed to ask questions of potential jurors at his original trial to establish “questionable impartiality”. He also claims the prosecution showed a pattern of racism in selecting jurors, and that the judge wrongfully barred the media and public from the courtroom.
The documents claim the prosecutors provided evidence, “insufficient and inconsistent so that no reasonable trier of fact could have found Mr. Smollett guilty beyond a reasonable doubt and thus there is evidence that the jury verdict was contrary to the manifest weight of the evidence.”
Smollett’s now asking for a new trial or a not guilty verdict.
Related: Brother in Smollett case denies homophobia, says he worked at gay club and Pride
Smollett’s case dates back to January 2019, when he says he was assaulted whilst out late one night in Chicago. He said the attackers used racial and homophobic slurs against him and put a noose around his neck.
Police later arrested brothers Abimbola and Olabingo Osundairo. However, following their investigations, and after it became apparent the Osundairo were friends of Smollett’s, they arrested the actor and charged him with concocting the whole thing himself.
Police say he recruited the brothers to stage the attack to negotiate a bigger pay packet and advance his career. Smollett has always denied this.
Mr. Smollett is a disgraced hoaxer. He caused the gay community embarrassment and gave credibility to homophobic detractors who don’t believe that gay-bashing exists. He should crawl back under the rock from which he came.
“Smollett points to his lawyers not being allowed to ask questions of potential jurors at his original trial to establish “questionable impartiality”.
Yeah, impartial = he didn’t do it.
I think he is a dumb guy who got caught. That said, if the rules were broken, he may have an argument. Don’t know if the argument is valid, but even people I believe to be total tools deserve the protection of law.
Smollett is being used by his lawyers. Yes it could be about the money but it’s probably about their egos and desire for attention!
Opps just like Jessie
Even though I don’t believe in his innocence, he’s certainly entitled to pursue all available legal avenues. I wonder who’s paying for the lawyers or are these those lawyers who will work gratis just to be associated with a celebrity, even a notorious celebrity?
What a huge waste of resources all around – imo, he should do his minimal time/community service and try to get on with his life; life is precious, and he’s wasting his own time.
Yeah, I wonder if they’re doing it gratis. His lead lawyer is a personal injury attorney, so I think he only gets paid if he wins the case! Or, his family might be paying. His sister Jurnee is an actress and has some money,
If Sarah Palin can do it, I don’t see why he can’t. Doesn’t mean he’ll get it, but if he does more power to him.
Was there a reason his lawyers weren’t allowed to question the jurors? Or are they using semantics as a defense, and his lawyers actually were allowed to question them, they just weren’t allowed to ask certain questions that the court deemed inappropriate? I wasn’t sure from the article.
Yeah, Cam, I have the same questions. I mean, it seems really unlikely that — especially in such a high-profile case — a judge would have simply forgotten or actively disallowed such a basic judiciary process as proper jury screening. Perhaps more info is available from another news source.
There is little chance he can salvage his career so he needs to maintain he was wronged in courts or some other way.
Yeah, agreed. And that he’s delusional. He lied up and down on the stand. I wouldn’t think the judge would take kindly to that at sentencing.
This case is old and moldy, way past the sale date. Get over it Jessie and move on.
When this story first broke – oh, so long ago – I thought it was about the right for anyone to get a sandwich, anywhere, anytime the shop was open. I’m all for that. But this case was about something else entirely. I stopped following.
I’m just here for the article (and comments) when it’s revealed that this didn’t happen.
January 31, 2019 at 12:01am”
This guy had everything and I’m sad to see that he’s thrown it all away. He’s got the looks, the voice, the bod, the job on “Empire”, probably the dick, he’s got everything. Cute AF. And he did *WHAT*? I guess he is crazy.
Agreed, except why would you assume he’s hung? Seen or heard something the rest of us haven’t?
o.codone, I agree with you. I increasingly think he had a psychic break or something. It still doesn’t add up; after Empire wound down he would have been an even bigger star than when it started, yet he blew it all up with this stunt.
BTW, His dick pics circulated a long time ago. He’s not lacking in that department.
(Not sure I’m motivated to do any deep web search for the pics, but I appreciate that info.)
The “publicity” motive still doesn’t make sense. His career was going just fine.
He can do what he wants but the court of public opinion has him guilty no matter what. Desperate to salvage his name that wasn’t a name before and won’t be again.
Am in the PM
Jessie for real doh, I still think you are redeemable buh please just move on with life bruh.
Jussie should pick his battles. He’s consistently made bad decisions throughout this whole debacle. But after seeing what a great job he did with B-boy Blues, the movie, I was hopeful that there was a possibility he’d be able to put this saga behind him and redeem some of his embattled career. For some reason he just can’t seem to let it go, smh.
A bone head but I still like him he should be working
Narracisst are never wrong..they hate facts..they don’t match his facts..he will try retry this case and sad story until he wins ..he won’t let it.go he truly believes his lies and the.bogus story..now instead of being a celebrated actor he’s known for the.hoax victim
The Accidental Polemicist
Not a “hoax victim”, but a hoax perpetrator.
Sick of this story. Please write THE END.