Legal experts have weighed in on the trial of Jussie Smollett to predict that the disgraced Hollywood actor is doomed after his testiomy backfired.
Former U.S. attorney Neama Rahmani told Fox News: “Smollett testifying in his own defense is one of two things, or maybe both: a narcissistic criminal defendant who is doubling down on his charged lies to law enforcement or defense attorneys who know they are way behind and are throwing a low probability Hail Mary to try to get their client off.
“Either way, Smollett’s story was a bizarre attempt at forcing a square peg into a round hole by offering every possible explanation for the state’s digital evidence except the most obvious one: that he is guilty.
“In the unlikely event he is acquitted, Smollett’s decision was a genius move.
“But it is far more likely that the jury sees through his ruse and Smollett is convicted.
“If so, the judge may sentence him to prison time for obstructing justice and perjuring himself on the witness stand.”
James White, a Michigan attorney said:
“His story is so unbelievable and in the face of the evidence that no reasonable jury is ever going to buy it.
“I think that he absolutely buried himself to the extent he wasn’t already buried.
“It was almost indecipherable trying to make sense of it, and I just don’t see how any reasonable jury is going to find any truth in anything he said.
“The real issue of the real story here is why was he even up there taking the stand?
“So for me, the million-dollar question, which really hasn’t played out during the course of the trial to the extent that I’ve seen is, did his attorneys try to stop this?
“Or were they a part of this plan? Because if it’s the latter, that’s a problem.
“To go up in international media coverage and do what he did if it was sanctioned by his counsel, that’s concerning to me. I don’t think that it’s anything that will reverse convictions or anything to that degree, but it’s concerning,” he said.
Jussie did not do a good job on cross-examination by the Special Prosecutor Dan Webb.
“Mr. Webb, with all due respect you don’t understand Instagram,” Smollett exclaimed, per CNN, as he said there was a difference between responding to an Instagram story versus sending an independent direct message.
“I don’t understand Instagram,” Webb replied, saying he wanted to focus on the private messages.
“If you could answer your questions, and not volunteer answers, I would be grateful.”
“I’m sure you would,” Smollett fired back.
Webb read one of the messages aloud that included the N-word, which the prosecutor purportedly said multiple times.
“Can you just say ‘the N-word’ or spell the word?” Smollett objected.
“Out of respect for every African American here.”
Webb apologized and let Smollett read the messages to the jury. According to the New York Post, the actor was combative again as he did not like Webb’s line of questioning.