The Chicago Police Department has released footage of Jussie Smollett wearing a noose around his neck on the night of his alleged attack at last.
The case of Jussie Smollett has been one of the strangest news stories of the year, and it is not over yet. On Monday, the Chicago Police Department released 69 hours of footage relating to the case to the public, including bodycam footage of the officers' first visit to Smollett's apartment after he called. In a clip published by CBS News, Smollett can be seen with a noose draped around his neck.
The footage follows three police officers entering the apartment in full police garb. Smollett was there waiting for them, standing in the middle of his living room. He had a long rope noose around his neck, and appeared disoriented.
Body camera video of CPD officers entering Jussie Smollett’s apartment the night attack was reported.June 24, 2019
In the clip, an officer asked Smollett: "Want to take it off?" referring to the noose. At that point he does so, having apparently waited to show them the state his attackers left him in. Smollet then asked the police if he was being recorded, and when they said yes, he asked them to turn the cameras off.
By itself, this clip does little to sway the story of Smollett's alleged attack either way. The actor was hospitalized on the night of Jan. 29, when he claimed he was attacked by two men on the streets of Chicago at around 2 a.m. Later, the Chicago Police Department argued that Smollett had fabricated the entire attack to put attention on himself and further his career.
No surveillance footage of Smollett's attack has ever been found, which is considered suspicious given the huge number of cameras around the city of Chicago. There were other factors as well, including confusing accounts from two brothers who claimed they had been paid to fake the attack, which they later recanted.
Smollett was charged with falsifying a hate crime, but those charges were ultimately dropped by Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx. Smollett took the news as vindication, and maintains to this day that he did not lie about the attack. However, public opinion has never quite levelled out on the subject.
The footage shows other milestones from the case as well, including police arresting the Osundairo brothers on Feb. 13, and more video from the investigation.