Jussie Smollett Faces Class 4 Felony, Turns Himself in to Chicago Police for Bond Hearing Today

Actor Jussie Smollett has been taken into custody by Chicago police and faces a Class 4 felony charge of disorderly conduct for allegedly filing a fake police report of assault last month.

Tom Ahern, the deputy director of news affairs and communications for the Chicago Police Department, sent a tweet confirming that Smollett had been detained. Ahern also noted that the charges against Smollett carry a sentence of up to three years in prison.

Smollett was taken into custody around 5 a.m. local time, according to CNN. A bond hearing for the Empire star has been set for 1:30 p.m. local time.

Smollett has been accused of lying to police by claiming to have been the victim of a late-night attack by two unidentified men in Chicago at the end of January. The 36-year-old actor said the men yelled Trump campaign slogans and used racial and homophobic slurs as they punched him in the face, put a rope around his neck and poured an unknown substance on him.

In the days after the alleged assault, Smollett gave interviews detailing the incident and lamenting the continued problems of racism and homophobia in American society. He also said he had been "forever changed" by the attack, the BBC reported.

Last week, two brothers—Ola and Abel Osundairo—were arrested by Chicago police on suspicion of involvement. But the two men quickly claimed that Smollett had paid them to carry out the attack and were released. Although he denied the accusation, Smollett was charged with filing a fake police report on Wednesday.

After the charge was issued, the actor's attorneys released a statement saying they intended to "conduct a thorough investigation and to mount an aggressive defense.

"Like any other citizen, Mr. Smollett enjoys the presumption of innocence, particularly when there has been an investigation like this one where information, both true and false, has been repeatedly leaked," the attorneys added.

Smollett received an outpouring of support in the days after his alleged assault, with celebrities and politicians jumping to his defense and calling for police to bring to justice to those suspected of attacking the actor. At one point, 2020 presidential candidate Kamala Harris described the incident as an "attempted modern day lynching."

But as his story unravelled in recent weeks, suspicions grew that Smollett may have orchestrated the incident himself, despite his repeated denials.

Under Illinois law, filing a false police report is considered disorderly conduct and can be punished by one to three years behind bars.

Jussie Smollett arrested detained custody
Jussie Smollett is shown at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's 60th Anniversary Opening Night Gala Benefit at New York City Center on November 28, 2018 in New York City. Smolett was taken into custody by Chicago police and faces a class 4 felony charge of disorderly conduct for allegedly filing a fake police report of assault last month. Theo Wargo/Getty Images
Jussie Smollett Faces Class 4 Felony, Turns Himself in to Chicago Police for Bond Hearing Today | U.S.