'Empire' star arrested for allegedly filing false police report

Jussie Smollett turned himself into Chicago police early Thursday and is being held on a felony charge of disorderly conduct.
9:09 | 02/21/19

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Transcript for 'Empire' star arrested for allegedly filing false police report
We have breaking news for you today actor Jesse small lead is now in custody facing a felony charge after police say his alleged. Tack. And reports that he was victim of a hate crime are all part. Of the big hoax you pilgrim is in Chicago she's been following this case closely all along and Eva it sounds like from what police are saying this started. One small less sense him self a threatening letter. In hopes of boosting his salary and that didn't quite go as planned. Gat you can hear them police superintendent pretty ticked off that this happened in his city and then nature of this crime. With all the issues that Chicago police deal went on a daily basis as is then to have to add this to the top of them but it all started because of that letter that they say and just he's not let sent to himself. It did not get the attention that he expected it to get. And that was when he started thinking about this next stage this alleged plot Neil listed these two Brothers. To help him orchestrate and stage that attack and it wasn't from the fact that there was a good. Old fashioned detective work they look at all those cameras some thirty class city as Chicago camera sent one me. Class private security cameras that they were able to go back to. And track where those Brothers when they got into elected then back tracked them to where they came from to see where they Lyndon figured out who they work. Getting those Brothers to sit down let them ultimately led them. To this information and this story and how it all played out Diane and a story apparently a ridge. Millie was that Jesse said he had been attacked that he. Had been put in a noose and that those two men then shouted homophobic and racial slurs at him as well as making political statements. Police now say that that was all a hoax but we're looking at a picture right now Jesse has some scrapes on his face it looks like he has some bruises. Where did those injuries come from at a police think happen there. Police today said they think those injuries came from just see himself that he. Inflicted those injuries on himself and then those pictures were taken and and and you're looking at them there you can see that the scratches on his face but nobody. According to the police did that to him other than he himself Diane. And in no it sounds leg this all really turned. Police have saying that 47 hour they detained these two men they thought might be suspects. And then they decided no these guys are witnesses. Gathered there attorney came in and they attorney talked to police out today and she reasoned and mpeg guy I think we need to talk to my clients. They have a pretty crazy story that you need to hear I don't think these guys are suspects like you think and when they talk to those guys. They they heard this story and they were able to corroborate their story that this was all a hopes that this was all planned that this was not. An attack on justice not lack by looking at some evidence that they were able to give police those phone records showing. A lot of communication between the two Brothers and Jesse thought both before. And after me it alleged attack happened even when the two went out of the country for a bed they were still in communication with small let. And then of course you heard the police talk about that chat. And the Czech that was written act and that evidence that they have showing that check Diane. At 3500 dollars police say that he paid those Brothers. Well we'll see how this case now plays out his attorney of course is promising an aggressive defense he's due back in court today. At 130 even pilgrim I'm sure we'll have the latest for us on that thanks Eva. And I want to go over to adjust Marc Rowland who's on the phone with us from investigative reporter there just. One of the big things that sounds like a six outs in an all of this is how this case turned how police when about bringing together. And they said they did have questions from the beginning but they decided to give just see the benefit of the doubt until. Or to substantiate that this was a hoax. Saying you're absolutely right the knee that the police superintendent and Chicago spent the warm apartment as press conference giving a master class about how. Cops and detectives do their work he he gave voice to the fact that there are always oddities and peculiarities and every investigation nothing is ever. It ever you know the waited on in a television drama they have questions and didn't make sense and we we're hearing from the beginning that things were not. A 100%. Making sense there are a lot of questions being raised our social media but the truth is. Superintendent job has said repeatedly they treated smaller as a victim here you reporter crime and they needed to investigate it was really only until. They took all of those doubts and then all of the evidence the data collected and then. In the two days of questioning of the Brothers at at the last hour before they would have to be released. Or charged. Superintendent Johnson said bats when. The aid being were able to get the information from the Brothers that turned this case surround that's in that moment small elect goes from being a big to elect perpetrate. Right and it sounds like the Brothers may not have expected the police to be waiting for them they left the country. After the allegedly staged attack and came back about two weeks later police said and the cops were waiting for them to tell that they may not have been expecting. They certainly were not leading the expecting that that the cops waiting for them at the airport waited at this superintendent said. But you know they'd be appealed saying that there's no such thing as a cook declined. This this may be exactly the opposite upper forgotten maybe the most. Imperfect crime when you take into account what would be did it back to beat dated a place was very very high camera coverage that was one of the first. Issues were raised by detectives. This is what the crazy thing to a current. It an area that's got a lot of camera coverage Chicago because of the nature of the crime in Chicago. They beat added more police and and public cameras to streets for coverage but they have. Cameras on buses and they have cameras on our private buildings and obviously they of the closed circuit security systems. At stores at a residential building. So in the end. It is almost begs the question of how could anybody have thought they would get away with it but then they be almost except for the fact that. The Chicago police dedicated a tremendous amount of resources. He has said could go business by business to get every piece of. But video just one little example we let reporter earlier this week if things were developing. Be the detectives on this case. That there is the allegation of course that there was a noose placed around smaller acts. So they had the well there was that election news faith and figured out through there are research. Where who make that rope. Where it is sold in Chicago and surrounding suburbs and then detectives went to every store. That's cells that well to get all of the video to see who bought that broke in the last number of weeks. And in it he looks like they really went through this. With a fine tooth comb and we know we have the detectives saying this is. Both the combination as you mention of all those cameras in Chicago he thanked the city for investing in that technology. But also the community coming together a lot of people on tearing their own private video footage in order to help solve this case so we heard the police superintendent. Very angry about B you know bad rap that Chicago. Got because of this case and now he's hoping that maybe knowing that it was a hoax if that turns out to be true. Will set the record straight so to speak and one thing maybe we can drop from this case is how the community came together. Certainly can be that I mean get a superintendent Johnson has an interest thing. Personal and professional stories he could came into leadership in the Chicago Police Department in the wake of scandal. And the Chicago Police Department has gone through its trials and tribulations and and there's been an acknowledgment and at a reckoning that the police deserves a lot of the bad rap. That that cops have gotten in Chicago recently and what superintendent job and has done as she is committed sits at turning it around. And so you have a situation where a guy from Chicago came up through the ranks is now in charge he has what really is a terribly heinous. Crime that would have occurred if if the accusation. Were real and so they investigated thinking they had a terribly heinous crime that need to be investigated it turns out it was a terribly heinous hoax. He said but I'm and he definitely want to get that that message out the community don't start up press conference. They're very very poignant way saying that he welcomed all the media. To the press conference but that he said he only wishes that all of the victims of families. The actual crime in Chicago gun violence actually got the same attention yeah the national incident about. Media and yelled at his address and course yard the importance of believing victims and how he hopes that this case. Doesn't then cause people to doubt victims of actual victims of hate crimes going for an important message there just are gone we appreciate it thank you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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