Don't go easy on Jussie Smollett, civil rights activist advises

Bill Grady
February 22, 2019 - 5:32 am

Chris Sweda - Chicago Tribune - TNS - Sipa USA

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Kansas City, MO - An area businessman and civil rights advocate thinks Cook County, Illinois officials should throw the book at  Jussie Smollett, the "Empire" actor who is accused of staging a race-fueled attack on himself in Chicago.

Henry Lyons, a real estate broker and president of the Olathe NAACP, said Smollett has done a lot of damage.

Lyons believes liberal politics motivated Smollett's claims, which, Lyons said, will create a negative ripple effect.

"He's destroying the reputation of the Chicago Police Department, which has had some problems, but he's also making it more difficult for people who actually have problems of the nature he described," Lyons said.

Lyons said the case amounts to a classic "boy who cried wolf" scenario. He became increasingly suspicious of Smollett's story when he heard that two Nigerian brothers gave police accounts that differed from Smollett's.

"I think (Smollett) should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law," Lyons said.

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