Chicago will sue “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett after it said he “refused” to reimburse the city for police overtime costs of $130,000 while they were investigating his hate crime claims, according to the Daily Caller.
“The Law Department will file the suit in the near future. As part of this legal action, the Law Department will pursue the full measure of damages allowed under the ordinance,” Chicago Department of Law spokesperson Bill McCaffrey said in a statement to The Daily Caller.
Time reports that the city can triple the amount it originally demanded from the actor.
“The municipal code stipulates that the city can triple the amount originally demanded if someone fails to pay an initial amount. That means the city could demand more than $390,000 from Smollett,” writes the publication.
The city will now follow through on its threats last week to prosecute the actor for making a false statement to his attorneys if he didn’t pay within seven days.
“You made a police report in which you falsely claimed that two men had attacked you while yelling racial and homophobic slurs,” the Chicago Department of Law wrote on March 28. “The Chicago Police Department conducted an extensive investigation into this report. Over two dozen detectives and police officers participated in the investigation, ultimately spending weeks investigating the false claims, including a substantial number of overtime hours.”
“In an attempt to resolve this matter without further legal action, the City requires immediate payment of the $130,106.15 expended on overtime hours in the investigation of this matter. If the amount is not timely paid, the Department of Law may prosecute you for making a false statement to the City under section 1-21-010 of the Municipal Code of Chicago.”