Jussie Smollett is no longer a cast member of Fox TV's hit musical Empire. The disgraced actor's character, Jamal Lyon, was written out of the last 5 episodes of the 2nd half of season 5, which returns from the fall break in March.

Empire fans can say with certainty that the body in the casket in season 5's dramatic finale is Jamal Lyon.

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Jussie Smollett

Jussie Smollett's Empire co-stars embraced the troubled actor as he returned to the set hours after posting a $100,000 bond and surrendering his passport on Thursday. Smollett, 36, was arrested early Wednesday and charged with a felony for filing a false police report.

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Jussie Smollett

Jussie Smollett is in police custody in Chicago after voluntarily surrendering early Thursday morning. Smollett is charged with a Class 4 felony for filing a false police report.

Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said Smollett, 36, staged a hate crime to earn more money as an actor on the Fox musical Empire.

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Jussie Smollett

Chicago's top attorney Kim Foxx has recused herself from the investigation into her friend, actor Jussie Smollett, star of Fox TV's music Empire. Foxx's spokeswoman Tandra Simonton said Foxx recused herself "out of an abundance of caution" to avoid "questions of impartiality based upon familiarity with potential witnesses in the case."

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Jussie Smollett, Bryshere Gray

Despite issuing a statement saying Fox would continue to stand behind actor Jussie Smollett, Empire producers have "drastically cut" Smollett's scenes after his MAGA attack story backfired on him.

Smollett is pictured above left with Empire co-star Bryshere "Yazz" Gray in a photo dated May 17, 2017.

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Jussie Smollett

After 2 days of interrogations, the Chicago Police Department released two Nigerian brothers late Friday without charges in the Jussie Smollett hate crime case. The brothers are no longer considered suspects, according to CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielmi, who said "new evidence" has emerged.

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Jussie Smollett

The cast of Empire is filming a big funeral scene for a major character who dies on the final season of the FOX TV musical. According to Twitter users, film crews were spotted inside the Fourth Presbyterian Church on Michigan Avenue in Chicago on Friday.

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