Tina Knowles, the superstar’s mother Beyonce, believes Jussie Smollett should be treated with “compassion” during her sentencing.
The actor was convicted of five counts of disorderly conduct for lying to Chicago police about being the victim of a racist anti-gay attack near his home in downtown Chicago. The 39-year-old maintains his innocence and his lawyer has said he will appeal the verdict.
While prosecutors are giving a possible sentence of three years behind bars, legal experts have said the former “Empire” star is unlikely to get jail time for low-level crimes. Instead, they believe he is more likely to be sentenced to probation and ordered to perform community service.
Knowles took to Instagram Monday and posted a screenshot of an article on the case. It also cites the case of Amy Cooper, a white woman who was arrested last year for calling 911 a black birdwatcher in New York City’s Central Park.
Her criminal case was thrown out in February after completing a diversion counseling program that prosecutors said was intended to inform her of the harm of her actions. Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi-Orbon said Manhattan prosecutors were satisfied with Cooper’s participation in the program and did not attempt to pursue the case further.
“The article goes on to say that both were wrong, but Jussie risks a possible jail sentence, and Amy Cooper. The woman who called police and lied about the black man watching birds in Central Park tried to attack her,” wrote the 67-year-old. -old.
“Leads to the potential arrest of the man where in the story of black men In Custody could have led to his death !!” she shared. “Amy Cooper got rid of public service. We will see the result of this for this black man. Will he have the same compassion as Amy Cooper?”
Knowles said she does not tolerate Smollett’s actions. However, she wondered if his race would ultimately result in a harsher punishment.
“I do not tolerate what Mr Smollet was found guilty of,” the matriarch wrote. “I just ask if he gets the same compassion and understanding for deliberately lying to the police.”
She also quoted Kyle Rittenhouse, the 18-year-old who was acquitted of all charges in November after testifying he acted in self-defense in the deadly Kenosha shootings. That verdict was met with anger and disappointment among those who saw Rittenhouse as a vigilante and a wannabe cop.
Rittenhouse was originally charged with murder, attempted murder and ruthless danger of killing two men and wounding a third with an AR-like semi-automatic rifle in the summer of 2020 during a tumultuous night of protests over the shooting of a black man, Jacob Blake , by a white Kenosha police officer.
Rittenhouse, a then 17-year-old former police youth injured, said he went to Kenosha to protect property from troublemakers, but that he was attacked and feared for his life. He is white, just like the ones he shot.
“Kyle Rittenhouse went free after killing two people because the jury had compassion?” asked Knowles.
Lawsuits that were pending pending the outcome of the criminal case concerning Smollett can now proceed. They include a lawsuit filed by the city of Chicago against Smollett to recover over $ 130,000, which it spent investigating what police initially thought was a horrific hate crime.
Judge James Linn scheduled a hearing after the January 27 trial and said he would schedule Smollett’s sentencing at a later date.
As for Smollett, it is unlikely he will soon start a successful Hollywood career. After prosecutors said the alleged attack was a hoax, Smollett lost his role in “Empire.” He later told jurors: “I have lost my livelihood.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.