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Jussie Smollett now a suspect in criminal investigation

The "Empire" actor could possibly face a felony charge.

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According to a tweet posted on Wednesday (Feb. 20) from Chicago police communications officer Anthony Guglielmi's account and TMZ, Jussie Smollett has been "officially classified" as a suspect in the ongoing criminal investigation surrounding the "Empire" actor's alleged attack.

The tweet goes on to state that allegedly filing a false police report, which Smollett is being accused of doing, is a Class 4 felony. At the time of this report, detectives are currently presenting evidence before a Cook County grand jury.

In addition to classifying Smollett as a suspect, Chicago detectives are reportedly working to obtain the actor's financial records as part of their investigation into what happened leading up to the reported Jan. 29 attack. Investigators have also asked Smollett for an additional interview to gain further insight into the events leading up to the alleged attack. At the time of this report, no such follow-up interview has taken place.

The news Smollett is being classified as a suspect arrives days after representatives for "Empire" actor issued a statement on his behalf denying his involvement in orchestrating the alleged attack.

Earlier this week, 20th Century Fox Television shared a statement rebuking rumors he is being written out of the show. The brief statement also featured a sentiment of support, referring to Smollett as a continued "consummate professional on set."

In another new development, the county's top prosecutor, Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx, has chosen to recuse herself from the investigation.

"Out of an abundance of caution, the decision to recuse herself was made to address potential questions of impartiality based upon familiarity with potential witnesses in the case," spokeswoman Tandra Simonton said in a statement.

More on this story as it continues to develop.

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