The brothers who claimed they were paid to mount an attack on Jussie Smollett are now reportedly unwilling to testify against the actor.
Chicago police allege that Abel Osundario and his brother, Ola, were paid $ 3,500 for jumping into Smollett in what the actor pretended was a racist and homophobic attack on him in January 2019.
The couple had originally expressed their intention to fully cooperate and testify against the “Empire” star, until their attorney told Chicago affiliate CBS on Wednesday that they had changed their minds.
Lawyer Gloria Schmidt Rodríguez said the two turned around because they feel that the police are still treating them as suspects and withholding the possessions that had been taken from them during a raid on their home in February 2019.
“More than a year has passed and they need to return our things to us,” Abel Osundairo told the station.
“I would understand if we were charged in the case, which we are not,” he added.
During the Valentine’s Day sweep, police officers stole among other possessions a safe containing a 9mm weapon and ammunition belonging to Abel, a legal gun owner, the station reported.
An administrative battle for possessions ensued, with Schmidt Rodríguez filing a court motion to return his belongings.
Chicago police told the store that the gun is kept as evidence in an evidence locker and that the department will cooperate with any court order if the judge orders the items to be returned.
Smollet, meanwhile, has been overcome by ups and downs in the legal system. In March 2019, he received a felony charge of 16 counts for filing a false police report, only to have Cook County State Attorney Kim Foxx suddenly drop all charges later that month.
But he was charged once again with allegedly organizing a hate crime attack on himself in February. Smollett pleaded not guilty to six new charges of disorderly conduct, accusing Smollett of lying to the Chicago Police Department about the incident.