Nolte: Looks Like Jussie Smollett Chose Wrong Surveillance Camera to Capture ‘Attack’

NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 24: Jussie Smollett speaks onstage during Entertainment Weekly's first ever "EW Fest" presented by LG OLED TV on October 24, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images for Entertainment Weekly)
Monica Schipper/Getty Images for Entertainment Weekly, Inset: ABC News

Jussie Smollett appears to have picked the wrong location for his “hate crime” to be caught on video, if we compare his Good Morning America interview to the latest reports about the two Nigerian men who say the actor-singer paid them to stage an assault.

As of now, it looks as though police believe Empire star Smollett not only lied about a phony hate crime committed against him by supporters of President Trump, he also hoped to arrange for the hoax to be recorded by a surveillance camera.

According to CBS Chicago, Smollett, who is black and gay, paid $3500 to two brothers (who are also black) to stage a racist and homophobic attack on him.

If the reports are accurate, Smollett’s planning was meticulous, including rehearsals and the purchase of the items used in the attack.

Smollett claimed he was accosted by two men in downtown Chicago at about 1:30 a.m. on January 29. He told police his attackers recognized him, shouted racist and homophobic slurs, beat him up, poured bleach on him, wrapped a noose around his neck, and warned him that “This is MAGA country!”– a reference to the president’s “Make America Great Again” slogan.

Over the past 20 or so days, according to various media reports, the story has completely fallen apart.

Police sources tell CBS Chicago that the rope wrapped around Smollett’s neck was traced back to a purchase made by Smollett himself.

What’s more, a search of the brothers’ apartment turned up bleach, a red hat, and a script from Smollett’s TV show Empire. Apparently, one or both of the brothers worked on the show with Smollett.

CBS Chicago adds, “The brothers told detectives the three men rehearsed the attack days prior to it happening.”

The most important dot to connect to all of the above, though, comes from Smollett himself, who told Good Morning America (GMA) last week that he suspected a surveillance camera caught the whole incident.

Speaking to GMA’s Robin Roberts, Smollett said, “And I looked up and I saw there was a camera directly on the light post that is in the intersection. So I’m like, ‘there it is!’… And then the detective told me that the camera inside of the casing was facing north, so they didn’t have it, and that was disappointing.”

That detail appears to stick in his craw. Later in the interview, unprompted, he brings it up again: “The camera facing north, how is that my issue?”

If these brothers are telling the truth that the attack was pre-planned, Smollett may have arranged for it to take place in a location where he assumed it would be recorded.

And one can imagine, had there been surveillance footage of the attack, the investigation would have proceeded very, very differently.

Once police had the footage, it would leak. Once cable and network news had the footage, it would loop endlessly. The fact that the two brothers are black wouldn’t matter. CBS Chicago reports that a black face mask was found in their apartment. Smollett told police the attackers wore face masks. With those face masks, the organized left (the media, Democrats, celebrities) were allowed to assume his racist attackers were white.

If local media reports prove true and Smollett did plan this, it’s easy to see what he could have gained — had the altercation occurred in front of any of the other cameras he walked past that night.

First off, he despises Trump and, it seems, Trump’s supporters, and this was an easy way to smear both, especially in a world with a corrupt media that is always eager to spread any kind of fake news or hoax that makes Trump or his supporters look evil.

There is also Smollett’s debut album, which is scheduled to hit store shelves on March 2, and the live performances promoting the album, which began just a few days after the attack.

Overall, it is just a fact that we now live in a media and entertainment culture where being a victim, most especially a black and gay victim of racist Trump supporters, assures you endless news cycles, worldwide fame, and unearned status as America’s conscience. Smollett may have not only believed his hoax would sell millions of albums but make him a civil rights hero — the kind of victim-icon offered a prime speaking slot at the 2020 Democrat National Convention, a potent weapon relentlessly wielded by the media to pummel Trump and his supporters.

Take a step back, though…

Take a step back and look at the fire Smollett was allegedly willing to play with…

Imagine what it would have done to this country and to the city of Chicago if the attack had been recorded, if an outlet like TMZ had leaked the video, and if the wildly irresponsible race baiters at CNN had broadcast that video over and over and over again — an endless loop of two men assaulting a gay, black man; pouring bleaching on him and tying a noose around his neck.

It would have been just like that other media hoax — “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” — and we all know what that led to: the destruction of a predominantly black neighborhood in the ensuing riots.

The American media are garbage.

Thank heaven the Chicago police are not.

Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC. Follow his Facebook Page here.


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