Jussie Smollett Strides To Hearing He Didn’t Have To Attend, Fights For Cameras In Court
Jussie Smollett is READY for his trial — and all the cameras it will bring!
The actor was photographed striding into a Cook County Courthouse on Tuesday for a hearing he wasn’t even required to attend.
According to reports, the hearing was really for Smollett’s attorney Mark Geragos, so he could file the paperwork that allows him to rep the actor in Illinois and decide if cameras will be allowed in court for the case.
As it turns out, they will be… at least for the 36-year-old’s next court appearance.
The judge made the ruling after Tina Glandian, another lawyer for Smollett, told the court she would welcome cameras in the courtroom because there had been a lot of leaked misinformation. Cameras, she argued, would allow the public to “see the evidence and the lack thereof.”
No one was happier about the ruling than Smollett, who was camera ready when he rolled up to court rocking shades, gloves, and a sleek grey trench coat — his first time being spotted since a grand jury indicted him on 16 counts last week.
TMZ sources say the actor chose to attend the hearing because he plans on being an active participant in his defense, as opposed to just observing. So, it’s safe to assume some dramatic monologues are in store for this court showdown, which, as we’ve been reporting, is becoming more scandalous than any storyline on Empire.
On February 20, the openly gay actor was charged with one count of lying to the authorities after claiming that he had been attacked on the streets of Chicago in a brutal “hate crime.” The two men who were initially suspects later claimed the actor had paid them to stage the attack.
Weeks later, a grand jury indicted Smollett on 16 felony counts of lying to authorities; eight counts from what he told the responding officer, and eight for what he later told a detective about being the victim of a brutal racist and homophobic beating by two masked Trump supporters in downtown Chicago.
Geragos called the charges “prosecutorial overkill” after the indictment, telling press:
“The fact of an indictment was not unexpected. We knew that there is no way they would expose their evidence to a public airing and subject their witnesses to cross-examination. What is unexpected, however, is the prosecutorial overkill in charging 16 separate counts against Jussie.”
Smollett has maintained his innocence. In his GMA interview last month, the actor told Robin Roberts that there had been misinformation reported about the attack, such as him telling police that his attackers wore MAGA hats — which, according to Smollett, never happened.
Is the whole truth on Smollett’s side? The fact that his team wants cameras in the courtroom makes it seem like he has nothing to hide. Chicago police, however, apparently have lots of evidence proving otherwise.
Either way, Smollett won’t be leaving our TV screens anytime soon!
[Image via WENN]