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We continue our coverage of the Jussie Smollett criminal trial. Thursday was an interesting day in the courtroom as we predicted. The prosecution rested its case after 3 days & 7 witnesses including the testimonies of the Osundairo brothers. As we all know,the brothers testimony is a critical component of the prosecution’s case. The brothers maintain that Smollett asked them to participate in this “fake attack”. Ola Osundairo testified and his story was in line with his brother’s accounts of events. Ola added though that they discussed using a noose and pouring gasoline on Smollett but he wasn’t comfortable with that so they decided on bleach instead. The prosecution contends there is video, GPS, and text messages that corroborate these statements.
Well it was the defense’s turn, on Thursday, to tell their side of the story. They cross-examined the Osundairo brothers, called the emergency room physician who treated Smollett after the attack, Smollett’s publicist at the time, Pamela Sharp, and Smollett’s former music manager Brandon Moore. Moore testified that Smollett sounded panicked when Smollett called and said, “Yo, I just got jumped.” Moore said he heard “something something MAGA country,” then what sounded like scuffling. They called Pamela Sharp to the stand to counter the prosecution’s opening statement that Smollett orchestrated the attack for publicity and a career boost. Sharp testified that Smollett earned between $100,000-$125,000 per episode which equated to about $2 million for a season. Basically saying he gets paid well and that wasn’t any motivation for a career boost. The emergency room physician testified that he had some bruises and scratches but no serious injuries. The defense contend the Osundairo brothers didn’t like Smollettt because they are homophobic and tried to get Smollett to pay them $1 million dollars not to testify that he staged the assault. The defense argued the Osundairo brothers saw an opportunity for a quick payday. When Shay Allen, one of Smollett’s attorneys, questioned Abibola Osundairo he inquired about his desire to be on Smollett’s security team and if he had a sexual relaitonship with Smollett. Osundairo denied both points and overall said “I wasn’t thinking,” in which Allen replied “We finally agree on something.”
Now the courtroom got heated when Tamara Walker, another one of Smollett’s attorneys, was really pressing Ola Osundairo on his use of homophoic words. For example, referring to one of his musician friends as a “fruity ass.” Ola admitted to using that language in the past and Walker continued to press. Well, Judge Linn angrily instructed Walker to move on from her line of “collateral” questioning. This point of framing the brothers as homophobic is a big part of the defenses case. If the defense can prove they are homophobic it wouldn’t be far fetched to believe they would have participated in this hate crime. Walker & Judge Linn then continued to have a very heated exchange in which Walker then asked for a sidebar. The judge initially denied the request but then sent the jury away and they proceeded with a sidebar. During the sidebar Walker claims Judge Linn lunged at her and immediately requested a mistrial. Well that escalated real quick. Judge Linn vehemently denies the allegation. Walker actually became emotional and began sobbing as she paced around a table, claiming Judge Linn was not allowing her to continue a line of questioning that was crucial to their case. Walker decided to leave the courtroom with her mother, who was in the gallery, and the rest of Smollett’s team continued to ask for a mistrial. Defense attorney Heather Widell also addressed the judge, stating, “I would also like to go on the record that there are facial objections coming from the bench when there are objections.” … “You’re great at facial expressions,” Linn shot back. Ya’ll there was real drama in the courtroom. Forget Empire. Goodness. Judge Linn denied the request for a mistrial but did address the jury by telling them to ignore the comments he made to the attorneys. He went on to say, “Sometimes words come out like ‘focus’ or ‘collateral’, that’s not part of your consideration, that’s just me communicating with the lawyers,” Linn told them.
Smollett, 39, is charged with six counts of felony disorderly conduct for making what prosecutors say was a false police report about the attack on Jan. 29, 2019 — one count for each time he gave a report — to three different officers. The class 4 felony carries a prison sentence of up to three years, but experts have said if Smollett is convicted he likely would be placed on probation and ordered to perform community service.
Judge Linn told jurors there would be no testimony today and that final arguments and deliberations would begin Monday and be done no later than Tuesday. I’m sure they could use a break. So you’ve heard our reporting of all the facts this week. What’s your take? Did Smollett & the Osundairo brothers stage this “fake attack?” Was Smollett the victim of a hate crime? We’d love to hear from you. Leave us a comment below. We will continue our coverage next week. This whole trial is a mood.
Now here is a positive story to go into our weekend. Trans singer Sasha Allen has been setting it off on The Voice every week and the fans are loving it. Sasha is half of a father/son duo which is extra special and they are on Team Ariyana. Sasha came out as trans during the Blind Audition package and he shared how difficult it was to make that decision. He says, “That was a really hard decision to make because you are showing a very vulnerable part of yourself to millions and millions of people,”… “But seeing people’s support and responses and how that has impacted people really showed that it was worth it and the right decision even though it was a hard one to make.” Sasha is the third trans person to compete on the Voice and the first to make it to the finals. So if you haven’t been watching, now is the time to tune-in and vote. The duo is good too so you’ve got double the reason to vote.
Family, now it’s time for the word of the day. The word for today is lead with love. As we go into the weekend, think about all the ways you can choose to lead with love. When you go to comment on someone’s post or maybe when you’re in line for Popeyes and they run out of chicken (not that I’m speaking from personal experience or anything) or when your loved ones press that last nerve. Take a big deep breath & just do what you can to lead with love. Till Monday family, peace.
Prosecution rests after brothers testify Jussie Smollett directed them to carry out a fake racist and anti-gay attack
The Hollywood Reporter
State Rests Case at Jussie Smollett Trial After Star Witnesses
The New York Post
Jussie Smollett’s lawyers claim judge ‘lunged’ at one of them, ask for a mistrial
NBC 5 Chicago
Jussie Smollett’s Attorney Alleges Star Prosecution Witness Sought $2M From Actor
Sasha Allen Makes TV History on The Voice! Singer Says Reveal Was ‘Really Hard Decision’
Trans singer Sasha Allen is burning up The Voice stage every week & America just can’t get enough