What to Know
- All criminal charges against "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett were dropped Tuesday, his legal team said
- Prosecutors said despite dropping the charges that they "did not exonerate" Smollett. Still, the actor has maintained his innocence.
- Smollett completed community service and forfeited his $10,000 bond to the city, prosecutors said
City lawyers on Thursday sent a demand letter to "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett seeking more than $130,000 for "overtime hours in the investigation" into his reported hate crime attack, which authorities say was staged.
The total numer came out to $130,106.15, Bill McCaffrey, a spokesman for the city government's legal department, confirmed Thursday, hours after Mayor Rahm Emanuel said the city would try to recoup the money it spent on the investigation.
"The city feels this is a reasonable and legally just amount to help offset the cost of the investigation," McCaffrey told NBC 5.
The letter says the city and its police department "take seriously those who make false statements to the police, thereby diverting resources from other investigations and undermining the criminal justice system."
"Chicago police reviewed video and physical evidence and conducted several interviews, expending resources that could have been used for other investigations," the letter reads. "Ultimately, the Chicago police investigation revealed that you knowingly filed a false report and had in fact orchestrated your own attack."
It threatens prosecution if the amount "is not timely paid."
Cook County prosecutors on Tuesday dropped all of the charges against Smollett, who was accused of lying to police about being the victim of a homophobic and racist attack in downtown Chicago on Jan. 29.
Emanuel and the police department blasted the decision to drop the charges, saying they stand by their belief that Smollett hired two friends to help him stage the attack because he was unhappy about his salary and wanted publicity.
"The finance is a piece of it and an acknowledgement that what he did at every level was wrong," Emanuel said.
A representative for Smollett's legal team said "it is the mayor and the police chief who owe Jussie - owe him an apology - for dragging an innocent man’s character through the mud. Jussie has paid enough."
See the full letter from the city below.