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Charges Dropped Against Jussie Smollett

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  • Charges were dropped against actor Jussie Smollett, who was accused of staging an attack against himself.
  • Both he and his attorneys have released statements maintaining his innocence.
  • Meanwhile, the Chicago Police and Mayor believe justice was not served in this case.

Charges Dropped

Charges against actor Jussie Smollett have been dropped by Chicago prosecutors.

Less than two weeks ago, Smollett pleaded not guilty to 16 counts of disorderly conduct for falsifying a police report. The actor from FOX’s show, Empire, was accused of staging a hate crime against himself in January.

Smollett told police that two men beat him, used racial and homophobic slurs, tied a rope around his neck, and poured bleach on him. Police later said that Smollett staged the attack and paid the two men to do so. Smollett has maintained his innocence.

On Tuesday morning, he appeared in court in Chicago for an emergency hearing. He agreed to forfeit his $10,000 bond to the city of Chicago. All charges were dropped against him, his record was expunged, and the court records were sealed.

Kim Foxx, a Cook County state attorney, released a statement calling this an appropriate resolution.

“After reviewing all of the facts and circumstances of the case,” her statement read, “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.”

Right now, it is unclear what prompted prosecutors to call the emergency hearing and drop the charges. According to a report from TMZ, questions arose regarding the check police alleged Smollet paid the attackers. The check may have actually been used to pay for physical training. This report, however, is unverified.

First Assistant State’s Attorney Joseph Magats told the Chicago Sun-Times that this decision does not mean there were flaws in the case against Smollett.

“We stand behind the CPD investigation done in this case, we stand behind the approval of charges in this case…They did a fantastic job. The fact there was an alternative disposition in this case is not and should not be viewed as some kind of admission there was something wrong with the case, or something wrong with the investigation that the Chicago Police did.”

Smollett and His Team Respond

Smollett’s attorneys also released a statement where they claimed Smollett was the victim, and was falsely vilified.

“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.”

Smollett also spoke out himself in a press briefing outside the courthouse on Tuesday.

“I want you to know that not for a moment was it in vain,” he told reporters.  “I’ve been truthful and consistent on every single level since day one. I would not be my mother’s son if I was capable of one drop of what I have been accused of.”

Chicago Police and Mayor Respond

Chicago Police Commander Ed Wodnicki called the prosecutor’s choice to drop charges a “kick in the gut.”

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel also disagreed with their decision, calling it “whitewashed.”

“This is without a doubt a whitewash of justice,” he said during a press conference. “And sends a clear message that if you’re in a position of influence or power you will be treated one way. Other people will be treated another way. There is no accountability in the system.”

See What Others Are Saying: (Chicago Sun Times) (CBS Chicago) (CNN)

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Bill Nye’s $28M Lawsuit Against Disney Headed to Trial

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  • Bill Nye will take Disney to trial under allegations that the company shortchanged him and his partners $28 million for his 1990s television series. 
  • The “Science Guy” claims that he is personally owed at least $9.4 million. 
  • Nye filed a complaint in 2017 and a Los Angeles judge just ruled that the case will go to trial.
  • The trial will take place in May 2020 over a span of 10 days, according to the ruling.

Judge Gives Green Light

Bill Nye, popularly known as the “Science Guy,” has been granted permission to take his case against the Walt Disney Company to trial.

Nye alleges that Disney failed to pay him and his partners $28.1 million in revenue from his hit 1990s television show, “Bill Nye the Science Guy.” He claims he alone is owed at least $9.4 million.

A Los Angeles Superior Court judge ruled on Thursday that a 10-day trial will occur in May 2020 to address the allegations.

Multi-Year Process 

The television personality filed suit in 2017, questioning Disney’s Buena Vista Television, who handled the accounting.

According to the complaint, Buena Vista Television came to a written agreement with Nye and the other owners of the show in which they agreed to “promote, market, and distribute the show.” Nye and his partners said that under this deal they were entitled to 50% of the net profit, but were shortchanged. 

Nye said he became suspicious of the accuracy of his paychecks after Disney claimed they made an “accounting error” in 2008. At that time, the company insisted that he repay them thousands of dollars that they had sent him a few months earlier. 

“Bill Nye the Science Guy” ran on PBS for five seasons between 1993-1998 and was screened in classrooms nationwide for educational purposes.

See what others are saying: (Los Angeles Times) (Fox News) (Hollywood Reporter)

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Cardi B Defends Offset From Cheating Accusations Citing Alleged Instagram Hack

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  • Sarah “Jade” Wattley, the girlfriend of rapper Tekashi 6ix9ine, recently showed a flirty DM sent to her from Migos Rapper Offset’s Instagram account. 
  • Soon after, Offset and his wife, rap superstar Cardi B, brushed off the rumors and explained that his account had been hacked.
  • It is unclear at this time if authorities have been contacted over the issue, but as of now, no person has been named responsible for the hack. 

Flirty DM Surfaces

Rapper Cardi B defended her husband Offset from cheating allegations Tuesday saying that a message he allegedly sent to another woman was actually the work of a hacker. 

The Migos rapper was recently accused of flirting with Sarah “Jade” Wattley, the girlfriend of rapper Tekashi 6ix9ine. 

In a video recently posted on Jade’s Instagram account, she recorded herself opening a direct message from Offet’s verified account. The message, sent at 1:36 a.m. read: “Miss u  fr.”

In the caption of her now-deleted post, Jade slammed Offset for the DM, saying: “Your wife @iamcardib has a OPEN CRIMINAL CASE , why are you writing me you don’t respect her ??????? Theirs a lot of s— I haven’t exposed yet , but there’s a time for that 😭😭😭🌈 I’m the QUEEN 👑 of talking s— now I’m backing it up 🎼😂🤡.”

The message sparked a wave of backlash from fans who noted that Cardi and Offset had already reconciled their marriage after previous reports of Offset cheating. On top of that, Cardi and Jade and known to have a tense history with one another.

Earlier this year, Cardi was indicted on 14 charges, including two counts of felony assault with the intent to cause injury after she was accused of ordering an attack on Jade and another bartender at a New York Strip club last year. 

Some reports indicate that the attack stemmed from rumors that Jade had slept with Offset, though Jade has denied having any relationship with him several times.  Another rumor suggests that the fight was prompted by a “drink being spilled on Cardi, whose actions have been described as ‘spontaneous and completely unpremeditated,’” the Daily Mail reports.

Cardi Defends Offset 

Cardi quickly defended her husband against cheating rumors, saying that his account was hacked. 

In a video posted on her social media, Cardi explains that they were woken up with news of the hack. In the background, another person is shown trying to regain access to Offert’s account. 

“Babe, I know you done some dumb s—, everybody know he’s done some dumb s—, but c’mon, n—s ain’t dumb, n—s ain’t crazy,” she said.  “We’ve been so good, we had a sweet weekend, life has been good,” Cardi added. “That’s why I ain’t getting no rowdy. Simple as that. Okay, love you guys.”

In additional videos, Offset explained that his email had been compromised, giving his hacker access to his account. He said he’s been dealing with this issue for months and has also had unreleased songs leaked because of it. 

Interset users also posted screenshots of tweets sent from his official account that seem to signal a potential hack. 

Still Jade hit back at the hacker claims saying, ‘the hack started after you got exposed.” “Why it didn’t start at 1 am,” she added.

If Offset and Cardi’s claims are true, it is unclear at this time if authorities have been contacted over the issue. As of now, no person has been named responsible for the hack. However, celebrity social media hacks are by no means uncommon and have been known to even impact major executives, including Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. 

See what others are saying: (E! News) (XXL Magazine) (PEOPLE

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Celebrities Praise Pop Star Kim Petras for Posing in Front of Anti-LGBTQ Protestors

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  • After billboards for singer Kim Petras suddenly appeared near the Westboro Baptist Chuch headquarters, the church asked members to picket outside of the transgender singers’ Kansas City concert.
  • Petras responded by holding a photo shoot in front of the protestors while dressed in a black thong bodysuit and thigh-high boots.
  • Fans and celebs have since flooded Petras’ social media with praise and support for her response. 

Westboro Baptist Church Calls for Protest 

Celebrities are praising transgender pop star Kim Petras for trolling Westboro Baptist churchgoers who were protesting outside of her show in Kansas City, Missouri on Sunday. 

A few weeks before the concert, four Kim Petras billboards suddenly appeared in Topeka, Kansas where the headquarters of the infamously anti-LGBTQ church is located. Though it was unclear who was responsible for the suspiciously placed signs, the singer seemed to approve of the move. 

The church, which is known for its inflammatory hate speech, later issued a statement calling for its members to picket outside of her Kansas City show. In the statement, the church repeatedly misgenders her and calls her a “sad soul.”

But Petras hit back with a statement of her own.

In a social media post, Petras wrote, “this is my official statement on wbc picketing my show in kansas tomorrow. this is the energy i’m bringing n it should be yours too.” The post also featured a video compilation of Petras meeting fans and performing in music videos over Famous Dex’s track “Hoes Mad.”

Kim Petras’ Photo Shoot 

Members of the ultra-conservative church followed through on their promise to protest and stood outside the venue holding signs like “God still hates f**s.” 

But Petras once again fired back with a unique response. The singer took the opportunity to hold a photo shoot in front of the protestors. In a video posted to her social media, Petras drops her coat and poses in a black thong bodysuit and thigh-high boots while the picketers stand in the background. The caption on the post reads, “update: hoes still mad…” 

View this post on Instagram

update. hoes still mad …

A post shared by KIM PETRAS (@kimpetras) on

The comments under her Instagram post quickly flooded with support from fans and fellow celebrities. Demi Lovato commented “YAAASSSS,” while Katy Perry wrote “Icon.” 

“Stay winning bb girl,” Madison Beer responded, with Tinashe writing “Yuppppp.”

James Charles simply commented “HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAA,” meanwhile Tyler Oakley added, “This is holy to me.” 

According to Insider, when asked for a comment about Petras’ post the Westboro Baptist church said it’s “happy” that Petras is “helping get the following message from Christ out to the masses,” and included a Bible excerpt of Matthew 19:4-6 in its email.

See what others are saying: (Insider) (Uproxx) (Entertainment Tonight

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