Several people could be heard chanting "We are here today to support black people", "We are here today to support LGBTQ people" and "Justice for Jussie" as the actor arrived and walked into the building wearing a dark gray coat and sunglasses.
Presiding Criminal Court Judge LeRoy Martin allowed a camera in the courtroom for Thursday's arraignment, but it will be up to Watkins, Smollett's trial judge, to decide whether cameras will be in court for future hearings. Otherwise, Smollett can not leave IL without the court's permission while he is free on bail, and Watkins admonished the actor to be present an on-time for all of his upcoming court dates. According to a tweet from Chicago's CBS affiliate, Smollett will be allowed to travel to NY and Los Angeles without asking the court permission as he awaits trial. He is accused of filing a false police report.
Watkins granted Smollett's request to be allowed to meet with lawyers in NY and California, but said the actor must give the court at least 48 hours' prior notice. Glandian said she would welcome cameras because "demonstrably false" evidence has been presented against her client. "And we look forward to complete transparency and the truth coming out". After an investigation by the Chicago Police, Smollett was found to have orchestrated the attack on himself, paying two brothers to jump him, pour bleach on him and tie a noose around his neck.
Prosecutors allege that Smollett, who is black and gay, staged the attack because he was unhappy with his salary and wanted to promote his career.
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A Cook County grand jury indictment, made public on Friday, charged Smollett with disorderly conduct for each crime he said he had suffered, with separate counts related to statements he made the night of January 29 to a police officer, and then for repeating the same account to a detective the same night.
The brothers are not facing charges. Superintendent Eddie Johnson said that the two men implicated Smollett while under police interrogation, and that authorities had the check Smollett wrote them in payment to prove it.
Smollett has denied all the allegations.