The Cook County sheriff’s office has decided to take some precautionary messages after hearing Jussie Smollett react to his sentencing. According to Chicago Tribune reporter Jason Meisner, the “Empire” star will take “a comprehensive medical, mental health and security assessment and will be placed in appropriate housing.” He will also be tested for COVID-19 and offered a vaccine if he hasn’t already taken one.
While COVID-19 testing is a customary protocol in most jails, the decision to give Smollett the aforementioned assessments follow his outburst in a Chicago courtroom. The star, who was convicted of five counts of disorderly conduct for lying to police about a staged kidnapping, was unhappy with his sentencing. After learning he was sentenced to 150 days in jail, he removed his mask and maintained his innocence.
“If I did this, then it means that I stuck my fist in the fears of Black Americans in this country for over 400 years and the fears of the LGBT community,” he said. “Your honor, I respect you and I respect the jury, but I did not do this. And I am not suicidal. And if anything happens to me when I go in there, I did not do it to myself. And you must all know that.”
Smollett is serving time behind bars after falsely claiming he was attacked by two men, who wrapped a noose around his neck and yelled racist and homophobic slurs at him among other things. Given his celebrity status, he will be placed in his own cell, which will be monitored by an officer wearing a body cam as well as security cameras. He will also be allowed “substantial time” to use the phone, watch TV and interact with staff, but no other inmates will be permitted to use the common areas when he’s there.
The 150-day term is part of Smollett’s 30-month probation. He is also ordered to pay restitution of more than $120,000 and a $25,000 fine.
See Smollett’s recent jail updates below.
JUST IN: In response to Jussie Smollett's comments about not being "suicidal" the Cook County sheriff's office says Smollett "will be given a comprehensive medical, mental health, and security assessment and will be placed in appropriate housing."
— Jason Meisner (@jmetr22b) March 11, 2022
"Currently, out of the more than 6,000 individuals ordered into custody at the jail, just 12 are positive for COVID-19 – all of whom were identified as positive during the intake process," according to the sheriff.
— Jason Meisner (@jmetr22b) March 11, 2022
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