Empire Actor found guilty of Falsely reporting hate crime

Written by on December 11, 2021

7:54 p.m. ET, December 9, 2021

CNN legal analyst: Smollett “exposed himself to jail time” with testimony

From CNN’s Leinz Vales

A Chicago jury found Jussie Smollett guilty of five counts of disorderly conduct for making false reports to police that he was a victim of a hate crime in January 2019.

A disorderly conduct charge for a false crime report is a Class 4 felony and punishable by up to three years in prison and a $25,000 fine.

However, CNN legal analyst Joey Jackson said the judge could give the former “Empire” actor probation, but added that Smollett, “exposed himself to jail time,” when he testified in court.

“When you testify in a case, the judge now gets a sense of what you said,” Jackson told CNN. “What Jussie Smollett said was resoundingly rejected by that jury. The jury did not buy what he was selling. That’s not lost upon a judge. You came into the courtroom and fabricated.”

Laura Coates, a former federal prosecutor, agreed with Jackson, saying Smollett’s testimony was a “miscalculation” by the defense team.

“So him taking the stand lead to his exposure in the way Joey has spoken about,” Coates said. “A judge is now looking at you, taking everything you had to say and assessing it.”

  • Jussie Smollett has been found guilty of five counts of disorderly conduct for making false reports to police that he was a victim of a hate crime in January 2019. He was acquitted on one count of felony disorderly conduct.
  • The 12-person jury deliberated for more than nine hours over Wednesday and Thursday.
  • The former “Empire” actor was charged with six counts of disorderly conduct on suspicion of making false reports to police.
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