Abel and Ola Osundairo, the brothers who told the police that Empire actor Jussie Smollett paid them to stage a racist and homophobic attack against him, are reportedly refusing to stand by their story with a public statement now that charges against Smollett have been dropped. TMZ reports that the brothers plan to maintain their silence now that Smollett’s criminal record has been wiped clean much to the dismay of their former attorney, Gloria Schmidt. According to their article, Schmidt has dropped them as clients because of their refusal to issue a statement to the press.
The news of the Osundairos loss of legal representation came via a written statement to the press.
“The Osundairo brothers were fully prepared to testify in any criminal proceeding in the Jussie Smollett case,” it reads, as reported by WGNTV. “Following today’s decision ending the criminal case against Smollett, Gloria Schmidt no longer represents the Osundairo brothers as trial witnesses in the criminal matter.”
The brothers may have some legal hurdles in the future connected to this case. As The Charlotte Observer reports, the Osundairo brothers testified in front of a grand jury. Gloria Schmidt has previously said that their testimony was not a condition of a plea deal and that it did not mean that they can’t be prosecuted in the future.
The prosecutor who dropped the charges against Jussie Smollett said he still believes the actor lied to the police about the racist and homophobic attack he allegedly staged in Chicago https://t.co/Q1wAeYOeSV pic.twitter.com/l25EshvFjJ
— CNN (@CNN) March 27, 2019
The Associated Press reports that Smollett’s attorney, Patricia Brown Holmes, has suggested that investigators should focus their attention on the Osundairo brothers.
“The two men who attacked him have indicated that they attacked him, so we already know who attacked him,” she said.
But as AP notes, the Chicago Police Department is sticking to its initial conclusion that Smollett staged a hate crime against himself with the assistance of Abel and Ola Osundairo. They believe that he did so in an effort to increase his salary.
Smollett has maintained that he was attacked by two masked men in January who punched him, tied a noose around his head, and drenched him with a chemical substance. According to his story, the two men shouted “This is MAGA country” as they ran away.
As The Inquisitr reported, Cook County First Assistant State’s Attorney Joseph Magats disputed that the dropped charges were a “whitewash” of justice as Mayor Rahm Emmanuel said, citing the fact that Smollett had paid his $10,000 bond and done community service. But Magats also said that he does not believe that the Empire actor is innocent.