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CHICAGO (LifeSiteNews) – Left-wing actor Jussie Smollett was convicted on five out of six counts of disorderly conduct Thursday for his now-infamous fabrication of a right-wing hate crime against himself in one of the most left-wing cities in America.

In July 2019, the 36-year-old gay actor best known for his work on Empire claimed he was assaulted in Chicago when two masked men allegedly shouted racial and ‘homophobic’ epithets, beat him to the point of fracturing a rib, put a rope around his neck, and poured bleach on him. “This is MAGA country,” they allegedly yelled, a reference to former President Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” slogan.

Numerous left-wing figures, including future President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, aggressively pushed the narrative that the incident was part of a wave of hate inspired by Trump. But critics immediately questioned the likelihood of violent Trump supporters roaming around the streets of strongly-Democratic Chicago, suspicions that intensified after police failed to find video of the attack among hundreds of hours of footage from cameras near where the actor says it happened, and Smollett only gave police “limited and redacted” phone records.

Two potential “attackers” were soon identified, but rather than pro-Trump whites they were two Nigerian brothers with ties to Empire. It was then reported that police suspected Smollett of paying them to stage the attack, and Smollett was officially charged in February with filing a false police report and indicted on 16 counts of disorderly conduct stemming from the offense, though left-wing Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx dropped the charges in March of that year.

Special Prosecutor Dan Webb revived six counts a year later, however, and Fox News reported that this week Smollett was convicted on five of them.

“He was found guilty of telling a police officer he was a hate crime victim, telling an officer he was a battery victim, telling a detective he was a hate crime victim, telling a detective he was a battery victim and then telling a detective again he was battery victim,” Fox reported. “He was not found guilty on a sixth charge of telling a second detective he was an aggravated battery victim.”

Now the case moves on to sentencing. Smollett could theoretically face up to 15 years in prison (with each count carrying a maximum of three years), though he could also be sentenced to as little as probation and community service.

While there was no actual hate-crime victim in the case, Webb said in a statement that Smollett’s actions had very real consequences for law enforcement in the Windy City.

“26 Chicago police officers spent 3,000 hours of time, costing the city well over $100,000 for a fake crime that never occurred,” he said. “And, by the way, a fake crime that denigrates what a real hate crime is. And to use these meanings and symbols that are so abhorrent in our society it’s clear why the police would take it seriously. And they did.”

On Thursday, MSNBC columnist Zach Stafford claimed it “doesn’t matter if the actor […] is wrongly being punished or if he did stage an elaborate hoax,” because the outcome “means the indisputable victims of hate crimes will now carry an even heavier burden of suspicion.” In fact, however, this case is far from the first indicator that such suspicion is prudent.

There is a long line of “hate crimesagainst political liberals or sexual, racial, or religious minorities that the mainstream media seized upon but were later revealed to be phony.

Additionally, left-wing activists often present real crimes against minorities as evidence of bigotry regardless of the actual motives. In 2019, The Federalist’s Chad Felix Greene detailed how pro-LGBT media misrepresented three murders of transgender individuals that year as examples of “transphobic” violence despite evidence indicating they were killed for unrelated reasons. 

Every year, the LGBT pressure group Human Rights Campaign (HRC) publishes lists of trans murder victims as proof of an “epidemic” of anti-LGBT violence, but for most examples fails to identify an LGBT-related motive. According to federal crime statistics, the trans murder rate is actually far lower than the overall murder rate.