Jussie Smollett Attack: Arrested Individuals Released Due to "New Evidence"
"The individuals questioned by police in the #Empire case have now been released without charging," a Chicago PD representative tweeted Friday.
The individuals arrested on Friday by Chicago police in regards to the Jussie Smollett attack have been released without charges due to "new evidence."
"EMPIRE CASE UPDATE: Due to new evidence as a result of today's interrogations, the individuals questioned by police in the #Empire case have now been released without charging and detectives have additional investigative work to complete," Chicago PD deputy director of news affairs and communications Tom Ahern tweeted Friday.
Two men were arrested Friday morning in the case of the alleged assault, but were not charged with a crime. The arrests came one day after the Chicago police said that they had identified two "persons of interest" in the case; CBS Chicago had previously reported that on Wednesday night, police raided the homes of two persons of interest in the attack.
The developments come amid a report that the Empire actor's case was being investigated as a hoax, an assertion that Chicago police have denied. "Supt Eddie Johnson has contacted @ABC7Chicago to state on the record that we have no evidence to support their reporting and their supposed CPD sources are uninformed and inaccurate," one Chicago PD representative tweeted Thursday.
Empire writers also hit back at reports that the attack was "staged" because the actor was being written off the Fox show. "The writers of Empire have never planned or even discussed writing @JussieSmollett off of the show," a tweet from the official writers room account stated.
On Wednesday, Smollett addressed his doubters in an interview with ABC's Good Morning America anchor Robin Roberts, saying, "At first it was the thing of like, listen, if I tell the truth then that's because it's the truth. Then it became a thing of, like, how can you doubt that? How can you not believe that? It's the truth." He added, "Then it became a thing of, like, it's not necessarily that you don't believe that this is the truth. You don't even want to see the truth."