Jussie Smollet Gets 18 Months in Jail, Starting Now

A Chicago judge has sentenced actor Jussie Smollett to 150 days in jail, beginning immediately.

Jussie's reaction: He yelled out he's not suicidal and he's innocent. Shorter version: If he ends up dead like Jeffrey Epstein, it was not a suicide.

Smollett faced up to three years in prison for each of the five felony counts of disorderly conduct — the charge filed for lying to police — of which he was convicted. He was acquitted on a sixth count.

The Judge wasn't buying into any sympathy pleas from his supporters. In addition to the 5 months in jail, he will have to be on probation for 2 1/2 years, he has to pay $120k in restitution and a $25k fine. His grandmother told the judge that if he sends Jussie to prison, he should send her along with him. [More]

Several supporters spoke about worries that Smollett would be at risk in prison, specifically mentioning his race, sexual orientation and his family’s Jewish heritage.

The judge said he weighed all that into his decision.

But [Judge]Linn also excoriated Smollett as a narcissist and pronounced himself astounded by his actions given the actor’s multiracial family background and ties to social justice work.

“For you now to sit here, convicted of hoaxing, hate crimes ... the hypocrisy is just astounding,” Linn said.

This case has a long history. It was settled by the Cook's County District Attorney but she writes here, "mob justice" took over and Jesse was indicted and millions of dollars that could have been better spent elsewhere were wasted in pursuit of a criminal conviction.

The Judge also told Jussie,

"You turned your life upside down. You destroyed your life as you know it. There is nothing I can do to you today that will come close to the damage you've done to your own life."

I disagree. 5 months in jail followed by 2 1/2 years probation for a non-violent crime committed by someone with no prior criminal record, who likely will become a target if put in general population in the county jail, is excessive. And if threats result in him being placed in protective custody where's he's in solitary, it's worse than excessive. In that event, the Judge's sentence will have hurt him far more than he hurt himself.

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  • Display: Sort:
    This was a weird one for me (5.00 / 2) (#12)
    by McBain on Sat Mar 12, 2022 at 03:59:54 PM EST
    I don't know what the correct sentence should be and I don't like the idea of bringing charges, dropping them, then bringing them back after people complained.

    Jeralyn makes a good point about a high profile convict possibly needed solitary confinement.  I imagine that being horrible.    

    Smollett has been granted (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by Peter G on Wed Mar 16, 2022 at 08:25:55 PM EST
    bail pending appeal, and is out of jail. Good work by his lawyers.

    To me, defendant caught a break. (none / 0) (#1)
    by oculus on Thu Mar 10, 2022 at 10:19:34 PM EST

    Racial hatred (none / 0) (#2)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Fri Mar 11, 2022 at 07:53:35 AM EST
    Jussie intended his crime to incite racial hatred against his targeted victims, white Trump supporters.  150 days for engineering a racial hate crime does not seem excessive.

    OTOH, as the Bee noted, he will have to share a jail cell with his attacker.


    Feh (5.00 / 4) (#8)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Mar 11, 2022 at 02:11:47 PM EST
    you're a Trumper, Trump who inspires racial hatred every day so truly no rational person believes you care about that.

    "A racial hate crime" (none / 0) (#10)
    by Yman on Fri Mar 11, 2022 at 04:03:57 PM EST
    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha ...


    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha ....


    Reportedly, he was trying to get a raise in pay. (none / 0) (#14)
    by oculus on Wed Mar 30, 2022 at 09:50:56 PM EST
    His name is "Jussie," isn't it? (none / 0) (#3)
    by Peter G on Fri Mar 11, 2022 at 08:28:03 AM EST
    Not "Jesse"? Anyway, if I were his lawyer, I'd be concerned that shouting out "I am not suicidal" could be taken as an indication of suicidal ideation, and result in my client's being kept in isolated and possession-deprived conditions in the jail, or even in restraints. Having a suicidal client poses a dilemma. You want them protected (from themselves), yet the way that jails "protect" people is basically to put them in solitary, at best, or restraints in the infirmary, at worst.

    Yes, it is Jussie (none / 0) (#11)
    by Jeralyn on Sat Mar 12, 2022 at 07:08:10 AM EST
    Thank you for pointing that out. I've corrected the post.

    In other news, (none / 0) (#4)
    by KeysDan on Fri Mar 11, 2022 at 09:25:10 AM EST
    A federal judge in DC sentenced Mark Leffingwell to six months in prison for the aggravated assault of two law enforcement officers during the Jan 6 violent attempt to overthrow the US government.

    On top of jail-time, Leffingwell faces $2,000 in restitution and 200 hours of community service.  Federal prosecutors recommended a 27 month sentence for aggravated assault. The judge took into account Leffingwell's mental status, along with having two sons and no criminal history.

    During the sentencing the judge presented a stern rebuke to the defendant and the Republican National Committee, who by resolution, proclaimed the putsch "legitimate political discourse."

    Confederate  flags, white supremacist, fascist hate for the electoral process is not good and has consequences.

    The bottom of the federal sentencing guideline (none / 0) (#5)
    by Peter G on Fri Mar 11, 2022 at 12:27:39 PM EST
    for aggravated assault of a LEO, assuming the defendant has no prior record and did not cause any injury, is around three years' imprisonment. If "assault of two LEOs" means two counts (i.e., two assaults, not just one assault that affected two officers), then the guideline sentence is more like four years. Curious how the judge explained a six-month sentence, which I hasten to point out is entirely lawful (i.e., the "guidelines" are just that, not binding).

    Smollett was still proclaiming his innocence as he was led out of court after sentencing.

    "I am innocent!" he said. "I could have said I was guilty a long time ago!"

    Smollett asked to be placed in protective custody and Linn signed an order requesting it, according to court documents filed after the hearing. The decision, though, is ultimately up to the sheriff's office, which runs the jail and has wide latitude in how it manages the population of just over 6,000 detainees.

    Smollett is being housed in his own cell, which is monitored by security cameras and by an officer wearing a bodycam to ensure he is under direct observation at all times, according to the Cook County Sheriff's Office.

    Beginning (none / 0) (#7)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Mar 11, 2022 at 02:10:11 PM EST
    to think he might need some mental health care.

    Same thought (none / 0) (#9)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Mar 11, 2022 at 03:28:49 PM EST
    Maybe some sort of addiction issue?