Jussie Smollett officially pleads not guilty to lying about gay hate crime

Jussie Smollett

Empire actor Jussie Smollett has officially pleaded not guilty to charges he lied to police about a gay hate crime.

One of Smollett’s lawyers, Tina Glandian, entered the plea at his arraignment in a Chicago courtroom this morning (14 March).

Smollett is due in court again on 17 April. He could face up to three years in prison.

Jussie Smollett: A background

This story began in late January when Smollett reported to Chicago police two men attacked him.

The investigation took a turn when police arrested two brothers. The brothers claimed Smollett paid them to help him stage the attack.

Jussie Smollett on Good Morning America | Photo: ABC

Jussie Smollett on Good Morning America | Photo: ABC

Earlier this month, a grand jury indicted actor Smollett on 16 felony counts.

The indictment stated Smollett filed a false report and then charged him with disorderly conduct.

According to CBS Chicago, the Cook County grand jury’s indictment stated: ‘Jussie Smollett knew that at the time […] there was no reasonable ground for believing that such offenses had been committed.’

Each of the counts covers various alleged false statements Smollett made to police officers. This includes alleged acts Smollett reportedly falsely described to officers, including two men attacking him and pouring a chemical on him.

Smollett was first charged with one count of disorderly conduct in February.

He continues to maintain his innocence as a victim and his attorneys said they would be mounting an ‘aggressive defense’.

See also:

Robin Roberts gets ‘honest’ over her ‘no-win’ Jussie Smollett interview

LGBTI advocate charged with arson after suspected hate crime on his home

Jussie Smollett cut from final two Empire episodes following arrest

Author: James Besanvalle

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Milan Christopher Claims Jussie Smollett Kept Him From Getting on ‘Empire’ and That He’s the ‘Father of Black Gay Hollywood: WATCH

Milan Christopher, rapper and Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood star, came out hard against actor Jussie Smollett on The Armon Wiggins‘ show yesterday, claiming that Smollett stopped him from getting on Empire.

Christopher claims that Smollett bad mouthed him around Hollywood because he was intimidated by Christopher and wanted to be the “it” Black, gay actor.

In a rant worthy of Kanye West, Christopher posted an Instagram post [since taken down] where he railed on and on that he was among other things, “The Father of Black Gay Hollywood.”

Christopher’s prose had manic self-aggrandizing quality that’s almost disturbing.

“In a lengthy rant that seems to have had no real point, except to brag…Milan wants us all to know he fathered us and we are all his sons,” reported Aazios, which captured the rant before it was taken down (see below). 

“In his rant he mentions several of his accomplishments which are all great but sir Karamo was the first openly gay male to have his real relationship play out on reality TV.”

Karamo refers to Queer Eye for the Straight Guy‘s Karamo Brown.

His claims are multitude but let’s confirm what we can:

“I was the first openly gay Black male to have his relationship played out on Reality TV.”

FALSE: Sean Sasser, who was Pedro Zamora’s boyfriend on The Real World San Francisco certainly was before Milan’s time. Sasser passed away years after Zamora, from HIV complications in 2013.

“I was the first Black celebrity to be a spokesperson for PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylactic) aka Truvada.

TRUEish: Christopher was in last yearF*** Without Fear HIV prevention campaign, the Los Angeles LGBT Center teamed with Christopher to launch its new PrEPd AF outreach campaign. “The main goal is to raise awareness that PrEP prevents HIV without impacting peoples ability to have active and fun sex lives, reported HIV Plus last year.

In the same interview he doubled down on his claim that “a lot of rappers are secretly bisexual.”

“The more attention the campaign gets, the more people it reaches and, hopefully, it reaches men who have sex with men who dont identify as gay or bi,” Christopher continued. “A lot of influential people in the music industry follow me on social media, so [hopefully] this reaches them.”

We’ll skip to the end which is the part that’s more fun and [I’m sure] unintentionally hilarious: “I’m fine AF [True], I have a beautiful smile [We’ll give him that], banging body [obviously], fat ass [no comment], and a big a** dick [unconfirmable at press time].”

Comedian Sampson McCormick, who also has been an “openly Black celebrity” who has been a spokesperson for PrEP, said of Christopher’s rant: “He’s an a**hole, I wish people wouldn’t give him the time.”

Watch Wiggins’ show below.

You can check out Christopher’s Instagram below.

View this post on Instagram

All I ever wanted was you for Valentines.

A post shared by #REVENGE Music Video Out Now (@milanchristopher) on

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Brandon Rogers’ Video ‘Apathy’ Is Your New Favorite Thing: WATCH

American Idol alum Brandon Rogers just dropped his new video Apathy.

Rogers’ musical journey has been exciting and challenging as he’s experienced major victories and navigated tough obstacles to get to where he is today: a man who is ready to own his spot as an artist and accomplished songwriter.

Rogers says Apathy came about following the break-up of a short relationship. He felt the sting of it when scrolling through his Instagram feed and seeing that the person had moved on with someone else. He notes, “It’s that emotional grey area where you know you don’t want the person anymore, but you see them moving on and happy with someone else and it’s not you.”

The concept was further inspired by his favorite quote from Holocaust survivor/humanitarian, Elie Wiesel, that states, “The opposite of love isn’t hate, it’s indifference.”

He decided on the synonym “apathy” as it worked better melodically and thus the song and title were born.

Produced and written solely by Rogers, it is an R&B laced modern pop classic showcasing his vocal range, prowess and undeniable mark as a fully actualized artist. At the heart of his music, he is a genuine storyteller, which is clearly evident with this single and other material he is eager to release for an upcoming album that will drop in the early part of 2019.

The video also includes an all-star cast featuring: Nikki Rae, Dylan Dovale, Natalie Cantral,l Ronnie Kroelle, Tadjh Brooks, Rachel West, Trinity Ganatt, Gilles Marini, Brandon Rogers, and Sasha Birrittella on guitar.

Watch the fire video below.

Photos by Rahsaan Patterson and Brett Richards.

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