Published Apr 05, 2019Chicago is planning to sue Empire actor Jussie Smollett for refusing to pay more than $130,000 USD in costs associated to the investigation of a hate crime hoax.
The decision comes after a bizarre turn of events that saw Smollett charged with 16 counts of disorderly conduct, before prosecutors unexpectedly dropped all charges against him — which didn't go over too well with Chicago's mayor or police department.
According to the Associated Press, the City of Chicago and the Chicago Police Department sent a letter to Smollett's lawyer last week, demanding repayment of $130,106.15 USD for "substantial overtime hours" spent working on the investigation.
As Smollett did not pay the sum in the seven-day period allotted, the city is now planning to take the actor to civil court.
As AP points out, the municipal code states that the city is allowed to triple the amount in damages if the initial payment is missed, meaning the sum in question could rise to $390,000 USD.
Making matters more complicated, a new mayor, Lori Lightfoot, will be sworn in to replace Rahm Emanuel on May 20, at which time she could reverse any legal action taken against Smollett.