Andrew Kerr | Investigative Reporter
The Chicago Department of Law said Thursday it will sue Jussie Smollett after it said the actor “refused to reimburse” the city for the cost of police overtime spent investigating his allegedly staged hate crime in January.
“The Law Department will file the suit in the near future. As part of this legal action, the Law Department will pursue the full measure of damages allowed under the ordinance,” Chicago Department of Law spokesperson Bill McCaffrey said in a statement to The Daily Caller News Foundation.
Chicago threatened to prosecute Smollett, 36, for making a false statement in a letter on March 28 to his attorneys if he didn’t pay the city $130,000 within seven days. (RELATED: Chicago Demands $130,000 From Smollett, Threatens New Charge If He Doesn’t Pay Up)
“[Y]ou made a police report in which you falsely claimed that two men had attacked you while yelling racial and homophobic slurs. The Chicago Police Department conducted an extensive investigation into this report,” the letter stated. “Over two dozen detectives and police officers participated in the investigation, ultimately spending weeks investigating the false claims, including a substantial number of overtime hours.”
Smollett case takes another twist. City of Chicago sends letter demanding $130K in reimbursement for police overtime:
“Please submit a money order or certified cashier’s check payable to ‘City of Chicago’ … within seven days of the date of this letter.” pic.twitter.com/qQd1Iz0hJw
– Andrea Berry (@andreacberry) March 28, 2019
Chicago is following through on its threat. The law department said it will file its civil complaint in the Circuit Court of Cook County.
Smollett had faced 16 charges for allegedly filing a false police report claiming that two individuals attacked him on the street with a chemical substance and a noose.
Prosecutors abruptly dropped the “Empire” actor’s charges in late March, citing the actor’s prior community service and his agreement to forfeit his $10,000 bail to the city of Chicago.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said the actor’s $10,000 bond “doesn’t even come close to what the city spent in resources” investigating Smollett’s alleged hoax.
Smollett’s community service consisted primarily of two days worth of volunteer service in March with the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, a nonprofit group Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. founded.
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