Empire actor Jussie Smollett claimed to be the victim of a racist and homophobic attack a few weeks ago. After police investigated the case, has now been arrested and charged with lying to police in connection with the alleged attack on 29 January.
The Chicago police arrested the actor, charging him with a fake report of his attack. It is believed his motive may have been that he was unhappy with his salary as an actor on the television series Empire.
Smollet has been released on $100 000 bail.
Eusebius McKaiser and listeners discuss the issue.
Jussie is sticking to his story and his lawyers are saying this is a man of impeccable character and he was indeed a victim of a hate crime.— Eusebius McKaiser, presenter
Show's producer, Camagwini Mavovana says Smollet is sticking to the story and his lawyers released a statement saying that he is innocent until proven guilty.
He (Smollet) went on a news show saying that he didn't do this, it was a hate crime. The truth is that the little facts are coming out, the two brothers who he hired say that they rehearsed the incidence and he paid them.— Camagwini Mavovana, Producer - The Eusebius McKaiser Show
They even told the police that earlier in the year the police took pictures of letters he allegedly received as hate mail. And the brothers say he wrote those letters himself. But he didn't garner enough attraction then, so he thought he must do something bigger.— Camagwini Mavovana, Producer - The Eusebius McKaiser Show
I have seen a couple of interviews with psychologists who specialise in very weird outliers in terms of some people who go to extraordinary lengths to fake certain things.— Eusebius McKaiser, presenter
I have read those reports and have thought to myself that maybe this guy is just causing mischief and is an attention seeker.— Eusebius McKaiser, presenter
Mavovana says we cannot trivialise what Smollet has done claiming that it was a mental issue.
He was self-seeking, he wanted fame, he wanted something out of this and he wanted attention. What I hate about this incident is that he doesn't understand how many people are now under attack because of this. The LGBTI community, black people who are threatened daily in America.— Camagwini Mavovana, Producer - The Eusebius McKaiser Show
Max, a caller says when one is in an environment where certain demographics have been victimised for centuries and find themselves in the current climate, there will be many individuals who will use that victimhood as a sense of power.
That is never to say that this is the majority, we should never include that, but that is very much a human function.— Max, caller
Listen below to the whole conversation around Jussie Smollet