Smollett’s lawyer says Nigerian brothers may have worn ‘whiteface’ during attack
A lawyer for alleged hate-crime hoaxer Jussie Smollett claimed Thursday that the two African-American brothers who attacked the “Empire” actor may have been wearing “whiteface.”
Smollett, who is black and gay, told cops after the run-in that he believed his ski-masked assailants were white because of a sliver of skin he saw around one’s eyes, though they turned out to be black acquaintances of the actor.
“Obviously you can disguise that. You can put makeup on,” said Tina Glandian, a member of Smollett’s legal team, on NBC’s “Today.”
When word emerged that Smollett’s purported attackers were black, not white, Glandian said she searched the names of the brothers, Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo, online and found a video showing one wearing whiteface in imitation of a Batman villain.
“One of the first videos that showed up actually was one of the brothers in whiteface doing a Joker monologue,” Glandian said. “So it’s not implausible.”
Neither brother has been criminally charged.
Smollett was initially indicted on a 16-count felony indictment, but Chicago prosecutors abandoned the case abruptly and with little explanation on Tuesday.
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