Jussie Smollett charges dropped

11:37 a.m. ET, March 26, 2019

What Cook County prosecutors are saying about the dropped charges

Cook County State's Attorney has dropped the charges against actor Jussie Smollett.

Here's what prosecutors said in a statement:

"After reviewing all of the facts and circumstances of the case, including Mr. Smollett’s volunteer service in the community and agreement to forfeit his bond to the City of Chicago, we believe this outcome is a just disposition and appropriate resolution to this case."
11:30 a.m. ET, March 26, 2019

Smollett had been charged with 16 counts of disorderly conduct

"Empire" actor Jussie Smollett was indicted earlier this month on 16 felony counts after authorities said he filed false reports of a crime.

The indictment charged Smollett, 36, with 16 counts of disorderly conduct.

Here's how things started: Smollett reported to police in January that he had been attacked in Chicago in an incident that ended with a noose around his neck. Police initially investigated the case as a possible hate crime.

The indictment: The indictment said Smollett told police he was attacked by two men who used racial and homophobic slurs during an attack at 2 a.m.

After police detained two brothers who were "persons of interest" in mid-February, police sources revealed that authorities suspected Smollett knew the men and allegedly had paid them $3,500 to stage the attack. The men were released without being charged.

Smollett denied any involvement in orchestrating an attack.

11:17 a.m. ET, March 26, 2019

Jussie Smollett's lawyers say charges against him have been dropped

Attorneys for "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett said all the criminal charges against him have been dropped.

"He was a victim who was vilified and made to appear as a perpetrator as a result of false and inappropriate remarks made to the public causing an inappropriate rush to judgement," they said in a statement.

Smollett — who authorities said filed false reports of a crime — was indicted earlier this month on 16 felony counts by a Cook County grand jury.

Attorneys Tina Glandian and Patricia Brown Holmes released this statement:

"Today, all criminal charges against Jussie Smollett were dropped and his record has been wiped clean of the filing of this tragic complaint against him. Jussie was attacked by two people he was unable to identify on January 29th. He was a victim who was vilified and made to appear as a perpetrator as a result of false and inappropriate remarks made to the public causing an inappropriate rush to judgement.  
Jussie and many others were hurt by these unfair and unwarranted actions. This entire situation is a reminder that there should never be an attempt to prove a case in the court of public opinion. That is wrong. It is a reminder that a victim, in this case Jussie, deserves dignity and respect. Dismissal of charges against the victim in this case was the only just result. 
Jussie is relieved to have this situation behind him and is very much looking forward to getting back to focusing on his family, friends and career."