When it was first reported that Empire actor Jussie Smollett was the victim of an alleged homophobic and racist hate crime in Chicago on Jan. 29, a plethora of elected Democrat politicians and liberal media figures accepted the story at face value and immediately ran with it.
The reported details of the alleged hate crime never quite added up, though, and now that it has been revealed that the incident was most likely a hoax perpetrated by Smollett and two friends, some of those individuals are attempting to walk back their ill-informed and immediate hot takes, including Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who deleted her outraged tweet about the purported attack.
Pelosi deleted tweet about Smollett
The Daily Caller reported that Pelosi tweeted on Jan. 29: “The racist, homophobic attack on @JussieSmollett is an affront to our humanity. No one should be attacked for who they are or whom they love. I pray that Jussie has a speedy recovery & that justice is served. May we all commit to ending this hate once & for all.”
Now that it increasingly appears that Smollett himself played a role in perpetrating a hate crime hoax, Pelosi has deleted her tweet expressing sympathy for the alleged victim.
Unfortunately for Pelosi, the internet is forever, and her initial tweet on the matter remains preserved for all eternity in the internet’s archives.
Early reports raised questions for some
Initially, it was reported that Smollett was physically assaulted on the streets of downtown Chicago as he returned to his home from a Subway restaurant at around 2 a.m. while the city was frozen by the sub-zero temperatures of the recent “polar vortex” weather system.
In addition to being physically assaulted, Smollett was also allegedly berated with racist and homophobic slurs by two men in ski masks and red baseball caps who shouted, “This is MAGA country,” as they tied a noose around his neck and poured bleach on him.
Despite the rather bizarre factual scenario Smollett relayed to law enforcement authorities, folks like Pelosi in the Democrat Party and liberal media jumped on the story as prima facie evidence of the racist and homophobic nature of President Donald Trump’s supporters, swiftly and uncritically accepting the allegations as fact.
Alleged hate crime exposed as likely hoax
Now, however, after the Chicago Police Department spent untold hours reviewing surveillance camera footage and searching for witnesses to the alleged assault, reports are emerging that Smollett enlisted the help of two Nigerian brothers with whom he was acquainted to engage in the fake hate crime for reasons that remain unclear at this time.
Police discovered evidence linking the brothers to the crime — such as receipts for the red hats and rope purchased to fashion into a makeshift noose — and the brothers reportedly decided to cooperate with police rather than face criminal charges of their own.
To be sure, though Pelosi deleted her initial tweet about the Smollett incident, and some in the media are acting as if they’d been suspicious of the story the whole time — they weren’t — Smollett himself has admitted nothing and remains firm in his stance that he was the victim of a hate crime, as evidenced by a statement released by his high profile defense attorneys denying his involvement in the alleged attack.
“As a victim of a hate crime who has cooperated with the police investigation, Jussie Smollett is angered and devastated by recent reports that the perpetrators are individuals he is familiar with,” said the attorneys in the statement. “He has now been further victimized by claims attributed to these alleged perpetrators that Jussie played a role in his own attack. Nothing is further from the truth and anyone claiming otherwise is lying.”