Jussie Smollett called 911 during alleged attack, says former Chicago police chief

Former Chicago Police Department Superintendent Garry McCarthy testified Friday that a crime scene where “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett paid an off-duty officer to help him stage a racist and homophobic attack was an actual phone call between Smollett and his then-trainer, Konrad Zoller.

McCarthy told jurors in the trial of Abimbola Osundairo, one of two Nigerian brothers who were with Smollett in the alleged attack, that he determined Smollett called 911 from Subway after it had happened.

He added that Smollett also said he did not get physical, which backed up the actor’s claims that he was lying about the attack, and that it sounded to him like he was in pain.

“There is no way that’s not in pain,” McCarthy said, adding: “It’s unlikely he walked.”

McCarthy said he then decided to check if the attack was live in his department’s records system — and it showed Smollett had called 911. A different incident report was filed with the department.

According to the transcripts, Smollett says to the operator: “I’m getting, like, a little black guy swinging on me, and everything.”

McCarthy was then asked whether he checked to see if Smollett also called police after reporting the alleged attack.

The former superintendent said he found out later that Smollett filed a report, but never called 911. McCarthy says he also never found out whether Smollett talked to police later.

The ex-chief also said he called two reporters who covered the case.

“I said ‘if you have a story.’ … and they said ‘I’m on record, that’s where it happened,’” he said.

As word got out about the attack, rumors started to spread and Smollett was heavily scolded by several prominent people. Smollett later said he lied about the attack.

During the calls, Smollett, 34, and Zoller are seen discussing getting a ride from the officers to the airport and a hotel, reports the Chicago Tribune. They are also seen discussing getting interviewed by police after their return from New York. The suspect, who is now 27, is accused of filing a false police report and, in the process, fueling a media frenzy that tinged the African-American star with racial taint.

Sitting in the witness box, McCarthy said the attack took place on the evening of Jan. 29 after a party that night at the same Chicago nightclub as Smollett.

McCarthy testified that the actor was “tired” and “upset” after the party, but “calm” when he was arrested.

Smollett, who is white, spent two days in jail following his arrest, but he later posted a $100,000 bond and was freed.

The Chicago Police Department said Smollett’s alleged attack was reported two weeks later, on Feb. 22. Smollett has consistently denied knowing the brothers.

The four men who police arrested and released after Osundairo gave varying accounts of how they met Smollett. The two men, who were named Osundairo and Olabinjo, have since pleaded not guilty to the hoax, reports the New York Daily News.

Read more on the case from the Chicago Tribune.

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