Jussie Smollett to Be Released From Jail Amid Appeal

Days after Jussie Smollett was sentenced to jail time, he's going to be released. The New York Post reported that Smollett is being released from jail on bond while his lawyers appeal his conviction. The former Empire star was originally sentenced to 30 months of probation, the first 150 days of which had to be spent in Cook County jail. 

While Smollett is set to be released on bond, he actually will not be required to pay the court any money. He would only have to pay if he skipped his court dates due to the terms of his I-Bond. This news comes two days after Smollett's lawyers filed an emergency motion to postpone his five-month sentence.

In their motion, they argued that the actor's life would be at risk if he went to jail because he has been the target of "vicious threats" online. They argued that the hate that he has received on social media "no doubt reflects the hatred and wish for physical harm toward Smollett, which he may experience during incarceration." Smollett has since been granted a release from prison while his legal team is in the appeal process, but special prosecutor Dan Webb wasn't on board with the decision. Webb wrote in response that Smollett did not provide adequate proof that he was in danger and that his team used "cursory, woefully undeveloped arguments" to achieve his release. 

Smollett was previously sentenced to 30 months probation and 150 days in Cook County jail. He was sentenced after being found guilty on five counts of disorderly conduct for lying to police following an alleged, staged hate crime against himself. The incident originally occurred in 2019, during which Smollett claimed to police that he was the victim of an alleged racist and homophobic attack on his way home. Amidst his trial and sentencing, Smollett maintained his innocence. After his sentencing was announced in March, he issued a lengthy statement in which he claimed to be innocent. 

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"I am innocent, and I am not suicidal," Smollett said while he raised a fist into the air, as CBS News reported. "If I did this, then it means that I stuck my fist in the fears of Black Americans in this country for over 400 years and the fears of the LGBT community. Your honor, I respect you and I respect the jury. But I did not do this, and I am not suicidal – and if anything happens to me when I go in there, I did not do it to myself. And you must all know that. I respect you, your honor, and I respect your decision."