Jussie Smollet pleads not guilty to 16 charges

15 March 2019 - 10:55 By Odwa Mjo
Actor Jussie Smollett pleaded not guilty on Thursday.
Actor Jussie Smollett pleaded not guilty on Thursday.

Empire actor Jussie Smollett pleaded not guilty to staging his own homophobic and racist attack in January. 

Jussie appeared in court in Chicago, US, on Thursday  after being indicted on 16  charges of disorderly conduct, CNN reported. 

He has been permitted to leave Chicago for New York and California to meet lawyers. His  next hearing is scheduled for April 17, Guardian reported.

Chicago Tribune reported that Empire aired this week for the first time since the actor was charged for staging his attack, with ratings falling from the season's average. 

The actor was arrested in February for allegedly filing a false police report after he claimed he was attacked in Chicago by two men who brutally assaulted him, poured a chemical substance on him and tied a noose around his neck.