Jussie Smollett, the “Empire” actor who was recently outed for allegedly committing a hate crime against himself, has been charged with 16 felonies by a Cook County, Illinois grand jury.
“Now the grand jury has returned 16 felony counts of disorderly conduct for filing a false police report,” said ABC7.
Smollett had originally been charged with only one felony count of disorderly conduct, the crime which encompasses filing false reports in Illinois.
“The grand jury returned two separate sets of charges,” the report said. “The first set are related to what Smollett told officers about the alleged attack, including that the attackers called him racial and homophobic slurs, struck him with his their hands, put a noose around his neck, and poured some sort of chemical substance on him.”
“The second set of charges are related to the second interview Smollett had with police about the alleged attack later that day.”
This story is developing.
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Appeals Court Refuses to Expunge Joe Arpaio’s Contempt Conviction After Presidential Pardon
A judge isn’t happy about the pardon.
A federal appeals court is refusing to expunge former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpario’s contempt of court conviction, after the sheriff was granted a presidential pardon by President Trump.
Such a legal move is rare if not unprecedented for the recipient of a presidential pardon. Usually federal and state court systems dismiss the convictions of people granted presidential pardon.
Arpaio was convicted of contempt of court in 2017 for refusing to change the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department’s practices after a judge mandated that the agency cease immigration raids.
Three judges of the liberal San Francisco-based 9th Circuit Court upheld a ruling from a lower circuit court refusing to expunge the legal record of Arpaio’s conviction. The move sets new legal precedent for a recipient of a presidential pardon.
Arpaio was a frequent target of Eric Holder and the Obama administration, often coming under intense DOJ scrutiny for the practices of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department.
Arpaio ran for the United States Senate in 2018, coming in third in the Republican Primart behind Martha McSally and Kelli Ward. He’s now running for his old position as Maricopa County Sheriff once more at the ripe age of 87.
In any case, presidential pardons have traditionally resulted in dismissal of criminal convictions in federal and state courts. It’s hard to think of the 9th Circuit’s decision to maintain the conviction as anything more than a political slight to President Trump.
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