Jussie Smollett’s attorney Tina Glandian told NBC’s Today that the reason the actor couldn’t identify his alleged attackers is that they may have been in whiteface.
Glandian clarified that the Empire actor wasn’t being misleading when he said his attackers were white because he could only see one of the assailants, who was covered in winter clothing and a mask. Under that mask could have been disguising makeup, she suggested.
“He only saw one of the attackers. One of them he didn’t see. He saw one through a ski mask,” she said, adding that Smollett couldn’t see his attacker’s bodies.
“He did tell police… from what we saw, he thought it was pale skin or white or pale skin, was I think what he said. And that’s why he initially did have a hard time,” she said.
She supported her claim by explaining that while she was investigating the two brothers who are accused of attacking Smollett, she found old footage of one of them in what she calls whiteface while playing the Joker from Batman.
“Obviously, you can disguise that. You can put makeup on,” she said. “I was looking up the brothers, and one of the videos that showed up actually was of the brothers in whiteface doing a joker monologue with white makeup on him.”
Jussie Smollett's attorney is now suggesting the Nigerian brothers wore "whiteface" when they attacked Smollett.— Caleb Hull (@CalebJHull) March 28, 2019
"Obviously, you can disguise that, you can put makeup on..." pic.twitter.com/zzvrlmBydI
Police claimed that Smollett hired Abel and Ola Osundairo, two brothers from Nigeria who worked on the show, to attack him in order to raise his profile in the media. After the attack, a video surfaced showing the brothers purchasing the type of things that Smollett claims were used during the attack, like a rope, hats, and a chemical, which the actor says was poured on him during the attack.
Glandian told NBC that Smollett was “shocked” when he found out it was the brothers who attacked him. Still, the Empire actor isn’t interested in pursuing charges against the men. She said that Smollett had expressed a desire to just move on with his life and the entire situation.
What does bother her, the lawyer said, is that not only was Smollett attacked in Chicago by two assailants but that in the wake of the charges against him being dropped, he has been attacked by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the Chicago police department. She said the fallout of the investigation has been much “harsher” than the initial incident.
Donald Trump also weighed in on the event this morning, as The Inquisitr reported, vowing to have the DOJ and FBI look into the case.