Jussie Smollett was sentenced to 30 months of felony probation – the primary 150 days of which he’ll spend within the Cook County Jail – a nice of $25,000, and $120,126 in restitution. As quickly because the jail time was introduced, the actor declared loudly that he’s harmless and that he’s not suicidal – so if something occurs to him throughout incarceration, it isn’t self-inflicted.
Unlike Jussie Smollett’s trial for prices of producing a hate crime, his sentencing earlier than Cook County Judge James B. Linn was broadcast publicly. It was a prolonged process throughout which protection attorneys and prosecutors alike spent almost two hours re-litigating the fees. These arguments got here in numerous pre-sentencing motions put forth by the protection and the prosecutors’ rebuttal to them. Then Judge Linn defended his rulings and the conviction and denied the motions earlier than conducting a short recess.
Smollett referred to as a number of witnesses to testify in mitigating the sentence. There have been colleagues and household, together with his 92-year-old Jewish grandmother. Jussie’s plucky bubbie introduced up the Holocaust and stated if the choose sentenced Jussie to jail, he ought to sentence her too.
Smollett maintained a reasonably informal look all through the lengthy proceedings till Judge Linn started to lecture him on the hypocrisy of faking a hate crime given his background and the seriousness of his continued perjury; At that time, the actor seemed to be taking issues very severely. After a prolonged arrange, the sentence was promptly adopted by a courtroom outburst on Smollett’s half. He yelled out that he was not suicidal, and that he was not responsible of faking the hate crime. The protection tried to steer the choose to permit Jussie to forego the precise jail time, however he was not swayed. The actor yelled out each his innocence and the truth that he isn’t suicidal on the best way out of the courtroom, taking part in up the protection’s claims that incarceration could possibly be tantamount to a demise sentence because of COVID, or the truth that the defendant is a well known homosexual black man with Jewish heritage.
A jury convicted him on 5 felony counts of disorderly conduct for mendacity to police within the face of overwhelming proof. He confronted a most sentence of three years in jail per rely. While laying out the sentencing pointers, Judge Linn made it clear he wouldn’t be working any jail sentences consecutively. In the top, nevertheless, Smollett was sentenced to nearly the whole lot he could possibly be however jail time.
The actor has by no means fessed as much as his crime, and, primarily based on earlier court docket filings, he intends to enchantment his conviction. For most legal defendants, the price is an insurmountable barrier to an enchantment – not for Smollett. The actor argued in a petition for a brand new trial that Judge Linn exhibited impermissible prejudice in opposition to the protection in his conduct and rulings.
Meanwhile, A celeb-studded marketing campaign to maintain Jussie from a custodial sentence was in full pressure. Jesse Jackson, NAACP President X, and actor Samuel L. Jackson pleaded his case. Those arguments usually say Smollett has already suffered many important damaging repercussions and featured acts of prior group service. Samuel L. Jackson and his spouse wrote, “Please Judge Linn, in God’s name, please save this young man and allow him to be of service.”
Smollett’s probation and jail time begins tonight.
~ Read extra from Scott D. Cosenza.