Jussie Smollett is appealing his 150-day jail sentence after being found guilty in 2021 of staging a hate crime in January 2019.
According to CNN, attorneys for the actor appealed the conviction and are requesting a new trial. “In the present case, instances of prosecutorial misconduct were clear and egregious,” the document stated. “Mr. Smollett’s constitutional rights to due process and to a fair trial were denied by prosecutorial misconduct including allegations that a defense witness was pressured to change his statement…and shifting the burden during closing arguments."
Smollett's team argues that his sentence is too harsh. Back in 2019, the actor was reportedly attacked by two men verbally and physically in Chicago. Smollett alleged that the men put a noose around his neck and poured bleach on him.
Evidence reportedly showed that Smollett actually paid the men $3500 to stage the hate crime. The actor was found guilty in December 2021. He was sentenced to 30 months of felony probation and 150 days in jail in March 2022.
Smollett maintains his innocence, during an interview on Sway in the Morning, Smollett expresses, “If I had done this, I’d be a piece of sh*t. …"he says. "That’s not really questionable. If I had done something like this, it would mean that I stuck my fist in the pain of Black Americans in this country for over 400 years. We’re not even talking about in Africa because that’s an even deeper, larger conversation. It would mean that I stuck my fist in the fears of the LGBTQ community all over the world. I’m not that motherfucker.”