The Chicago Police Department (CPD) said Friday the two men who were being questioned over the alleged racist and homophobic attack on “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett were arrested.
The men were identified as two Nigerian brothers, according to The Associated Press.
CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said both were arrested on suspicion of assault and battery, but not charged, for possibly being involved in the alleged attack. One of the men worked on “Empire,” but it is not clear how much this person was involved, The AP reported. (RELATED: Authorities Seeking ‘Persons Of Interest’ In ‘Empire’ Star Jussie Smollett’s Alleged Attack)
The arrest comes after multiple media outlets and journalists reported on various allegations surrounding the incident.
Sources claimed the attack was allegedly planned by Smollett and the “persons of interest” could have been co-conspirators after learning that Smollett’s character was allegedly “being written out of the show ‘Empire.'”
“TOP SOURCE: ‘…indicators point to Smollett orchestrating the event….'” CBS Chicago’s Brad Edwards tweeted.
— Brad Edwards (@tvbrad) February 15, 2019
“BREAKING: Multiple sources [sic] tell @ABC7Chicago Eyewitness News Jussie Smollett [sic] and the 2 men who are being questioned by police staged the attack – allegedly because his character was being written out of the show Empire,” Rob Elgas of ABC 7 tweeted.
BREAKING: Multiple soucres tell @ABC7Chicago Eyewitness News Jussie Smollet and the 2 men who are being questioned by police staged the attack – allegedly because his character was being written out of the show Empire.
— Rob Elgas (@RobElgasABC7) February 15, 2019
“Empire” writers countered the allegation about writing off Smollett’s character, however.
“The writers of Empire have never planned or even discussed writing @JussieSmollett off of the show,” the Empire Writers tweeted Thursday.
The writers of Empire have never planned or even discussed writing @JussieSmollett off of the show.
— Empire Writers (@EmpireWriters) February 15, 2019
Guglielmi also said that media reports about whether the attack was a hoax were not confirmed.
“Media reports about [sic] the Empire incident being a hoax are unconfirmed by case detectives,” Guglielmi tweeted Thursday. “Supt Eddie Johnson has contacted @ABC7Chicago to state on the record that we have no evidence to support their reporting and their supposed CPD sources are uninformed and inaccurate.”
Media reports anout the Empire incident being a hoax are unconfirmed by case detectives. Supt Eddie Johnson has contacted @ABC7Chicago to state on the record that we have no evidence to support their reporting and their supposed CPD sources are uninformed and inaccurate. pic.twitter.com/iSO5YFv452
— Anthony Guglielmi (@AJGuglielmi) February 15, 2019
Smollett claimed two men beat him up, tied a rope around his neck, said racial and homophobic slurs and threw an unidentified chemical substance on him on Jan. 29, according to The AP. He reported that the attackers said “This is MAGA (Make America Great Again) country,” in a follow-up interview with CPD.
The “Empire” star disputed that he ever said the attackers wore MAGA hats in a Good Morning America interview Thursday.
CPD did not immediately respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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