- One of two Chicago brothers at the center of the high-profile alleged hate crime hoax involving ‘Empire’ star Jussie Smollett competed in a boxing tournament
- Abimbola ‘Abel’ Osundairo participated and won his semifinal bout
- Smollett, 36, recently pleaded not guilty to 16 counts of disorderly conduct for allegedly staging a phony attack claiming two men beat him yelling racial slurs
- He is charged with filing a false police report, a Class 4 felony
- Police say that he hoaxed a hate crime assault on himself on January 29
- Charges carry a maximum sentence of three years and a fine of up to $25,000
One of the two brothers at the center of the Jussie Smollett scandal headed into the ring for a boxing match in Chicago Thursday night.
The Osundairo brothers have told police that Smollett paid them to help to stage his attack back in January.
Abel Osundairo, 27, arrived at the bout dressed in a robe with the American flag and knocked out his opponent in round one.
His performance in the ring calls into question how Smollet managed to defend himself and fight off his alleged attackers and escape with just the faintest of scratches.
Police say Smollett’s facial injuries were not from the siblings but were instead allegedly self-inflicted.
‘He’s got a right hand that puts most guys down,’ said Sam Colonna, Chicago Golden Gloves Board Member of Abel Osundairo to ABC7 Chicago. ‘He’s moves, kind of like an Ali type, kind of jabs and moves around very well.’
The Osundairo brothers were Smollet’s personal trainers at one point and the pair were allegedly caught on surveillance video buying materials police say were used in the alleged staged attack on Smollett.
Smollett faces 16 felony counts of disorderly conduct for allegedly filing a false police report.
He claims he was the victim of a vicious hate crime in the Streeterville neighborhood back in January, but police say it was a hoax and that Smollett hired the Osundairo brothers to carry out the fake attack. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.
Abel would not speak to the media either before or after the fight and simply said ‘Thank you for coming.’
The brothers confessed to police on February 20 that Smollett hired them to beat him up and told them to make it appear as though it was a racist and homophobic attack on January 29.
On national television Smollett said he put up a fight against his so-called attackers and walked away with only a couple scratches.
The brothers, meanwhile, fled to Nigeria and were out of the country while Smollett performed to sold-out shows and arranged interviews with national media.
The brothers were picked up by police on February 20 as they arrived back in Chicago.
They were questioned by police for 47 hours before finally telling them that Smollett was behind the entire attack.
Smollett, who met the pair when they appeared on Empire as extras, denies their version of events but is yet to offer an explanation for much of the evidence police say they have.
A check he gave the brothers for $3,500 was labeled as payment for a workout and nutrition program and it was dated January 23, four days before the attack.
Police say the actor deliberately backdated it to make it appear innocent and said he was in fact paying them for the attack.
They claim to have video proof of Smollett in a car with the pair days before the incident when they said he was concocting their story.
Footage has already emerged of the brothers buying ski masks and other props to use in the attack.
Jussie Smollett tells Chicago police he was physically attacked by two men in downtown Chicago while walking home from getting food from a Subway restaurant at 2am.
The black and openly gay actor tells authorities the men used racial and homophobic slurs, wrapped a rope around his neck and poured an ‘unknown substance’ on him.
Smollett told detectives that the attackers yelled he was in ‘MAGA country,’ an apparent reference to President Donald Trump’s ‘Make America Great Again’ campaign slogan, which some critics of Trump have claimed is a racist dog whistle.
Chicago police say they’ve reviewed hundreds of hours of surveillance camera footage, including of Smollett walking downtown, but none of the videos show the attack.
Police obtain and release images of two people they would like to question.
Reports of Smollett’s attack draw outrage and support on social media, including from U.S. Senators Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, and Elizabeth Warren.
Both Booker and Harris called the incident a ‘modern day lynching’.
Joe Biden said: ‘We must stand up and demand that we no longer give this hate safe harbor; that homophobia and racism have no place on our streets or in our hearts.’
Trump tells reporters at the White House that he saw a story the night before about Smollett and that, ‘It doesn’t get worse, as far as I’m concerned.’
Smollett’s family issues a statement calling the attack a racial and homophobic hate crime.
Smollett’s family says he ‘has told the police everything’ and ‘his story has never changed,’ disputing assertions leveled on social media that he has been less than cooperative and changed his story.
Smollett issues a statement telling people that he is OK and thanking them for their support.
He says he is working with authorities and has been ‘100 percent factual and consistent on every level.’
Smollett gives sold-out concert in West Hollywood, California, opening with an emotional speech, saying he had to play the show because he couldn’t let his attackers win.
At the end of the set, he announces that he fought back against his attackers, calling himself ‘the gay Tupac’.
Congresswoman Maxine Waters is in attendance at the concert.
February 5th: Chicago PD releases incident report which reveals Smollett did not want to call police. There is no mention of the MAGA country remark which he gave in a follow-up interview
Brandon Z. Moore, his manager, gives police a screenshot to prove their call.
February 11th: Smollett finally hands over redacted phone records to prove the phone call but police label them ‘insufficient’.
His neighbors say they don’t believe his version of events.
February 12th: Smollett’s rep releases statement to say he is the victim and that he has been telling the truth
February 14th: Good Morning America airs the full interview with Smollett, in which he blasts speculation that the attack was staged as itself racist and hateful.
Hours later, it emerges that two Nigerian brothers were picked up at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport on their return from Nigeria the night before.
Cops identify the two men as the individuals seen in the surveillance images released from the night of January 29 but will not share their names.
Two television stations in Chicago simul report the widespread belief among investigators that Smollett staged the attack as a hate hoax.
Chicago’s police superintendent later said that he had no evidence to prove that the attack was a hoax.
Producers of ‘Empire’ dispute media reports that Smollett’s character was being written off the show.
High-powered criminal defense attorney Michael Monico reveals that he is representing Smollett.
DailyMail.com confirms they are brothers Olabinjo ‘Ola’ Osundairo, 27, and Abimbola ‘Abel’ Osundairo, 25.
Later, Chicago police spokesman Anthony Guglielimi says the two ‘persons of interest’ are now considered suspects. He says the men are in custody but have not been charged with a crime.
Chicago police release two men without charges after arresting them on suspicion of assaulting Smollett and holding them for nearly 48 hours.
A police spokesman said the two are no longer considered suspects and that investigators have ‘new evidence’ to consider as a result of questioning them.
A police spokesman said that the investigation had ‘shifted’ after detectives questioned the two brothers about the attack and released them without charges.
Smollett hired Michael Cohen’s high-powered criminal defense attorney, Michael Monico, as the police investigation into the attack he reported last month took a sudden shift amid allegations of a hoax.
Smollett’s lawyers said on Saturday the actor felt ‘victimized by reports he played a role in the assault, and that Smollett would continue cooperating with police.
A police spokesman said that Chicago police have told Smollett’s attorneys they want to do a follow-up interview with the actor.
A spokesperson for Smollett’s lawyers said she couldn’t comment on whether Smollett had agreed to another interview.
Stars and politicians who spoke out in support of Smollett walk back their condemnation of the attack amid growing suspicion that it is a hate hoax
The Osundairo brothers speak with police and prosecutors in Chicago but are halted at the last minute before going to testify before a grand jury.
Smollett hires Colin Kaepernick’s attorney Mark Geragos and his legal team present a ‘hail Mary’ piece of evidence which stops the brothers’ testimony
State’s Attorney Kimberly Foxx recuses herself from the case citing her ‘familiarity with potential witnesses’
Leaked information from the brothers’ meetings with prosecutors and police emerges. They reportedly claimed Smollett was involved in sending himself the letter on January 22
Fox says Smollett is not being written out of Empire contrary to reports and Smollett’s co-stars speak out in support of him.
He is named as a suspect later in the afternoon and the brothers are seen entering grand jury offices at the courthouse.
Smollett is criminally charged with filing a false police report, a Class 4 felony which carries a maximum penalty of three years imprisonment and a $25,000 fine.
Smollett hands himself in to police at 5am. He is later charged with filing a false police report and posts $10,000 – ten percent of his $100,000 bond – and is released from jail.
The actor then releases a statement through his attorneys insisting he is innocent and claiming the prosecutors’ office ‘trampled’ on his presumption of innocence.