Here is a timeline of events in the Jussie Smollett case.
Jan. 22 – A letter threatening “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett is received in the mail at the Fox studio where the show is filmed. The note uses letters clipped from a magazine.
Jan 29 – Smollett reports that he is attacked by two men who placed a rope around his neck, poured a chemical on him and yelled racist and homophobic slurs. The attack happened around 2 a.m. on one of the coldest days in Chicago history.
Jan. 30 – Chicago police release a surveillance image of “two persons of interest.” Police say there is no surveillance footage of an attack.
Feb. 2 – Smollett performs in concert in Los Angeles, his first public appearance following the attack. “I’m not fully healed yet. But I’m going to [be], and I’m gonna stand strong with y’all,” he told the audience.
Feb. 4 – Chicago police release the incident report that notes Smollett still had a rope around his neck when police arrived to speak with him. He said the attackers were wearing black masks.
Feb, 12 – Smollett turns over “limited and heavily redacted” phone records to Chicago police. The records include the hour before the reported attack
Feb. 13 – Police raid the home of two brothers, identified as Ola and Abel Osundairo. Some of the items seized include a magazine, stamps, a black face mask, an Empire script, a phone, receipts, a red hat and bleach. The raid happened as the brothers were returning from a trip to Nigeria.
Feb. 14 – Citing police sources, CBS 2’s Brad Edwards reports “indicators point to Smollett orchestrating the event” with other men. The Osundairo brothers are considered persons of interest in the case.
Feb. 15 – The two brothers questioned by police are released from custody and are no longer considered suspects, police say.
Feb. 16—CBS 2’s Charlie De Mar reports at least one of the brothers purchased the rope at the Crafty Beaver hardware store. Plain red hats worn by the brothers were purchased at an Uptown beauty supply store. Sources say the brothers made the purchases at Smollett’s direction. Sources say the brothers were paid $3,500 by Smollett to help stage the attack. They also rehearsed the attack.
Feb. 17 – Chicago police say they want to speak with Smollett. “Detectives have some follow-ups to complete, which include speaking to the individual who reported the incident,” police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi says.
Feb. 18 – Smollett’s attorneys said, “There are no plans for Jussie Smollett to meet with Chicago police today. Smollett’s attorneys will keep an active dialogue going with Chicago police on his behalf.”
Feb. 18 – Smollett, upset after a racist letter sent to the show’s studio didn’t get a “bigger reaction,” is suspected of paying two men to attack him a week later, according to multiple sources with direct knowledge of the investigation.
Feb. 19 –Sources say Smollett was behind sending the racist letter, based on interviews with the two brothers. The brothers also met with prosecutors on Tuesday and the Leighton Criminal Courthouse. Sources also say the brothers were seen on a ride share video as they were dropped off near the location of the attack.