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Jussie Smollett maintains her innocence.
Smollett, 40, insisted he didn’t lie about the alleged hate crime hoax in a new interview on the SiriusXM show “Sway in the Morning.”
“If I had done that, I’d be a piece of s—. And I don’t think that’s really debatable,” he said.
“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… It would mean that I stuck my fist in the fears of the LGBTQ community everywhere. I’m not that mother — uh – I never was, I don’t need to be,” Smollett insisted.
JUSSIE SMOLLETT RELEASES NEW SONG, ‘THANK GOD’, AFTER RELEASE FROM PRISON: ‘YOU HAVE THE WRONG’
There “EmpireThe actor was convicted in December of staging an anti-gay, racist attack on himself nearly three years ago and then lying to Chicago police about it.
The jury found Smollett guilty on five counts of disorderly conduct – for each time he was accused of lying to police in the days immediately following the alleged attack. He was acquitted on a sixth count, of lying to a detective in mid-February, weeks after Smollett said he was attacked.
The actor remained in jail for six days before being released following an appeal from Smollett’s lawyer.
Smollett’s attorneys had argued that he would have served his jail term by the time the appeals process was completed and that Smollett could be at risk of physical harm if he remained locked up in the Cook County Jail.
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In the new interview, Smollett went on to point out that he was not looking to have a “climb” in his career at the time of the alleged attack.
“He didn’t need to have some sort of rise in his career,” he explained. “I was booming. I had come from New York after reading a painting for my dream role in a Broadway show. I had just acquired the rights to Alvin Ailey’s authorized autobiography…”
“All these things that I was creating, there would be no reason for me to do stupid shit like that. But people seek to believe what they believe.”
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Smollett also opened up about his time in prison and clarified that he fasted for clarity.
“I was fasting because that’s what we do in my family. As if we were fasting for clarity…I’ve never in my life, at least in my adult life, been so clear of mind that for those six and a half days. … I was fasting until I knew whether or not I was going to stay there for those five and a half months,” he explained.
“I just wanted to know what my life was going to be like.”