CHICAGO, Ill. (WKOW) — The two brothers who investigators say Jussie Smollett paid to attack him say they regret any involvement.
A statement to the media from the brothers’ lawyer reads, “My clients have tremendous regret over their involvement in this situation, and they understand how it has impacted people across the nation, particularly minority communities and especially those who have been victims of hate crimes themselves.”
Smollett is accused of paying the men $3500 to yell slurs at him and beat him up near his Chicago apartment in late January.
The Empire actor had initially reported it as a hate crime, but investigators say Smollett set up the whole thing himself. Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said Smollett did it because he thought he should be paid more as an actor.
Smollett maintains his innocence. His lawyer said he feels “betrayed by a system that apparently wants to skip due process and proceed directly to sentencing.”