On January 29, news broke that Smollett was involved in an attack in which two perpetrators yelled racial and homophobic slurs at the Empire actor, beat him, and poured a chemical on him. The Chicago police department arrested two brothers in connection to the crime, but later determined that they were co-conspirators with Smollett in staging the attack. Smollett was then arrested. He plead not guilty.
However, on Tuesday morning all 16 felony counts were reportedly dropped, and Smollett will surrender his $10,000 USD bond. He will apparently instead perform community service, but the case will not move forward.
His two lawyers, Tina Glandian and Patricia Brown Holmes, released a statement to Buzzfeed confirming that their client's record has been wiped clean.
They also say that he was "vilified" as a victim as a result of an apparent rush to judgement. “It is a reminder that a victim, in this case Jussie, deserves dignity and respect," they write. "Dismissal of charges against the victim in this case was the only just result. Jussie is relieved to have this situation behind him and is very much looking forward to getting back to focusing on his family, friends and career.”
Smollett's family has also released a statement on the news.
"Our son and brother is an innocent man whose name and character has been unjustly smeared," they wrote. "Jussie is a son, a brother, a partner, a champion for human rights, and a genuine soul who would never be capable of what he was falsely accused of. He was the victim of an assault and then falsely blamed for his own attack. This morning truth has prevailed and he has been vindicated. All the charges have been dismissed and his record expunged (cleared). The painful incidents we've witnessed him endure over the past 7 weeks have been heartbreaking and unjust to say the least. While many were quick to rush to judgement before hearing the actual truth, we are grateful that the truth about Jussie has come to light. We look forward to bringing the real perpetrators to justice. We thank God and our village for standing by us during this trying time."
Smollett also addressed the dropped charges on Tuesday afternoon, telling reporters "I would not be my mother's son if I was capable of even one drop of what I have been accused of."
This is a developing story that will be updated as more information becomes available.