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Jussie Smollett Court Records To Be Unsealed, Judge Rules "No Right To Privacy"
05-23-2019, 03:04 PM,
Jussie Smollett Court Records To Be Unsealed, Judge Rules "No Right To Privacy"
Jussie Smollett Court Records To Be Unsealed, Judge Rules "No Right To Privacy"

<p>A judge in Chicago <strong>ordered the file in Jussie Smollett's criminal case unsealed</strong> Thursday, saying the actor's actions <strong>did not appear to be those of someone seeking to maintain his privacy</strong>.</p>

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<p>As a reminder, the "Empire" actor had been charged with 16 counts alleging he <strong>lied </strong>to police when reporting he'd been the victim of a racist, anti-gay attack in January. <strong>Police insist Smollett, who is black and gay, staged the incident because he was unhappy with his salary and wanted publicity.</strong></p>

<p><strong>Prosecutors dismissed all charges,</strong> though, with little explanation on March 26.</p>

<p><strong>Smollett's lawyers had argued that since the case was dropped, Smollett had "the right to be left alone." </strong></p>

<p>Judge Steven G. Watkins of the Circuit Court of Cook County <strong>disagreed</strong>.</p>

<p>Apparently hoisted by his own self-promoted pitard; <a href="">as The New York Times reports</a>, in explaining his ruling, Judge Watkins wrote that<strong> Mr. Smollett’s request for privacy was not a good enough reason to keep the records sealed</strong>, considering that Mr. Smollett willingly spoke about the situation in detail on national television and in other venues.</p>

<p>“After the March 26 dismissal, he <strong>voluntarily stood in front of cameras from numerous news organizations</strong> in the courthouse lobby and spoke about the case,” Judge Watkins wrote.</p>

<p><strong>“These are not the actions of a person seeking to maintain his privacy or simply be let alone.”</strong></p>

<p>As AP reports, Natalie Spears, an attorney representing media organizations that wanted the file unsealed, applauded Watkins' decision Thursday.</p>

<p><strong><em>"This is about transparency and trust in the system and we believe the public has a right to know what the government did and why,"</em></strong> she said after the hearing.</p>

<p>Speaking outside the courtroom on Thursday, Mr. Watson said that he was <strong>unsure whether he will appeal</strong> the judge’s decision and that he had to speak with Mr. Smollett before making any next steps.</p><img src="" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>

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