“Empire” actor Jussie Smollett is maintaining his innocence and pleading with a judge to dismiss the lawsuit filed by City of Chicago.
According to court documents obtained by The Blast, Smollett is demanding the case filed by the city seeking $130,000 be dismissed.
The actor says his story has never changed and he maintains his innocence, pointing to his criminal charges being dropped.
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Smollett says this lawsuit, “appears to be an unprecedented effort to seek penalties and resources expended in connection with allegedly false statements made to the police where the related criminal case concerning the statements was dismissed nolle pros on all counts.”
He also calls into question the amount they are seeking, “Both claims fail to state sufficient factual allegations to support a reasonable inference that Defendant’s allegedly false statements caused the CPD 1,836 overtime hours and the City paying $130,106.15 in overtime pay.”
Smollett wants the entire lawsuit thrown out.
Back in April, The City of Chicago sued Smollett seeking to recoup the costs of the investigation into his alleged attack.
In the complaint, the city did not mince words in saying Smollett staged the incident.
They wrote, “On January 29, 2019, Defendant submitted a false police report claiming that he was the victim of a racist and homophobic beating by unknown attackers," the lawsuit states. "In reality, Defendant knew his attackers and orchestrated the purported attack himself. Later, when police confronted him with evidence about his attackers, he still refused to disclose his involvement in planning the attack."
Chicago says they "incurred significant costs in order to provide services reasonably related to Defendant’s conduct."
The city asked for $130,106.15 for the investigation, plus $1,000 "for each false statement he made" to police. They also believe they are entitled to three times its total damages, so Smollett could be on the hook for nearly half a million dollars.
Smollett’s attorneys responded to the initial threat of a lawsuit, calling it "unconstitutional" and accused the city of trying to “get a second bite at the apple once charges against a criminal defendant have been dismissed.”