Tina Knowles-Lawson, mother to superstar Beyoncé Knowles, said this week that actor Jussie Smollett should be treated with “compassion” during sentencing, claiming that teenager Kyle Rittenhouse “walked free after killing two people” because the jury “showed compassion.”
Smollett was convicted last week on five counts of disorderly conduct for lying to police about a hate crime hoax in 2019. Despite conviction, the actor maintains he is the victim of a racist, anti-gay hate crime and has not apologized.
Rittenhouse was found to have acted in self-defense when he was attacked in Kenosha, Wisconsin, last year at a Black Lives Matter protest-turned-riot.
“We will see the outcome of this for this Black man,” Knowles-Lawson posted to Instagram, citing an article from CNN.
“I am not condoning what Mr. Smollet was found guilty of, I am just asking will he get the same compassion and understanding of knowingly lying to police,” she wrote. “Kyle Rittenhouse walked free after killing two people because the jury had compassion?”
During the same post, the 67-year-old brought up the case of Amy Cooper, who called the police after she said she felt threatened by a man in Central Park, who happens to be black. After the media framed the encounter as a racist, the woman, who is white, eventually had charges against her dismissed.
Below is the full caption from Knowles-Lawson:
The article goes on to say both were wrong but Jussie faces possible prison time and Amy Cooper The woman who called the police and lied about the black man that was Bird watching in Central Park was trying to attack her. Leading to the potential arrest of the man where in the history of black men In Custody could have led to his death !! Amy Cooper got off with public service . We will see the outcome of this for this Black man . Will he get the same compassion as Amy Cooper? I am not condoning what Mr Smollet was found guilty of . I am just asking will he get the same compassion and understanding of knowingly lying to police . Kyle Rittenhouse walked free after killing two people because the jury had compassion ?
Smollet, back in January 2019, claimed he was targeted and attacked by apparent supporters of then-President Donald Trump in an anti-gay, anti-black hate crime. His alleged attackers, whom he allegedly described as white males who yelled “This is MAGA country,” were brothers Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo. Notably, the brothers are both black men who knew the “Empire” star before the incident and have claimed Smollett orchestrated the “hoax.” The Daily Wire detailed Smollett’s claim at the time:
Smollett contends he was targeted by two Trump supporters, who verbally and physically accosted him as he was walking home from a Subway sandwich shop in downtown Chicago on January 29. The actor says the men called him a “f*****” and a “n*****,” tied a noose around his neck, poured bleach on him, and kicked him in the ribs.
A jury on Thursday found Smollett guilty on five counts of disorderly conduct related to the incident. He has not yet been sentenced, but is facing up to three years in prison on each count, NBC Chicago reported.
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