Jussie Smollett Charged with Felony as Police Negotiate Surrender for His Arrest

Smollett's role on Empire has reportedly been curtailed

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He now faces felony charges for filing a false police report and disorderly conduct. A conviction for a class 4 felony in IL carries a 1-3 year prison sentence and can include fines up to $25,000, according to the state's general assembly.

Empire actor Jussie Smollett is now considered a suspect by Chicago police in the investigation into his claims that he was beaten in an alleged racist attack.

A little over two hours later, 16 members of the grand jury were escorted out of the area and into a pair of elevators while reporters were kept at bay.

Media reports indicate the brothers told police that Smollett paid them $3,500 each to stage the attack with another $500 promised after their return to the country.

The sources told CNN the two men are now cooperating fully with law enforcement.

Cook County state's attorney Kim Foxx, Chicago's top prosecutor, recused herself from the Smollett investigation on Tuesday, citing "familiarity with potential witnesses".

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See more on the case in the video below. Guglielmi took to Twitter to add that detectives are involved and are presenting evidence before a grand jury.

Smollett has repeated stood by his account.

Update (February 21, 9:30 AM ET): The actor turned himself in to Chicago Police on Thursday morning following the charge that came down Wednesday evening.

In response to the charges, Smollett's lawyers Todd Pugh and Victor Henderson released a statement on his behalf.

"Empire" star Jussie Smollett has been charged with filing a false police report, a felony.

The men were arrested Wednesday but released without charges Friday after Chicago police cited the discovery of "new evidence". He said they yelled racist and homophobic slurs at him before putting a rope around his neck and fleeing the scene.

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Guglielmi said the Chicago Police Department believes they'll get a chance to ask Smollett the questions they have.

"We are trying to be diplomatic and reasonable, and we're hoping he does the same", police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi told AP.

Fox Television says "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett "continues to be a consummate professional on set" and it has reiterated that he's not being written out of the show.

If he is found guilty, he could end up serving up to three years in prison according to TMZ. Smollett is black and gay. They have declined to comment on reports that the attack was a hoax.

CBS Chicago previously obtained a video of two brothers Abimbola "Abel" Osundairo and Olabinjo "Ola" Osundairo purchasing a red hat and ski masks at a local store the day before the assault.

Smollett has claimed two men wearing a similar hat and masks attacked him on January 29 in Streeterville, according to police. made multiple phone calls and visited several stores to obtain the video.

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