Postal Inspection Service closes case into Jussie Smollett’s alleged hate mail

Chicago News

The U.S. Postal Inspection Service has closed its investigation into the alleged hate mail actor Jussie Smollett received in 2019.

The racist and homophobic letter addressed to Smollett was received at the Cinespace Studios in Chicago. It had his name scrawled in red marker and the return address simply read “MAGA.” Inside it contained a note that read “You will die, black (homophobic slur).”  It included a drawing of a lynching and a gun.

It reportedly did not receive a big enough reaction and it allegedly lead Smollett to stage the infamous attack.

According to heavily redacted investigation reports from the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, a “letter sent to Empire actor Jussie Smollett”  was initially reported to have  “contained white powder residue”  and “included a threat.”

After an extensive investigation, they concluded that the “the location (from which) the suspect letter was mailed could not be determined.”

Investigators also determined that no powdery substance was sent with the letter.

Instead they say it’s likely that “the person who initially opened and handled the letter had taken Tylenol prior to handling the mail piece.”

The investigation cites media reports that the letter may have been sent by Smollett himself stating “the motivation for all of this was publicity and attention.”

In late March 2020, the FBI, which had been looking into the case as a potential hate crime, closed its case.  

The report states: “Per FBI personnel on the civil rights violation case … The investigation is no longer moving forward.”

Days later, the postal inspection service closed its case.

The inspection service has not commented on the case.

The Cook County State’s Attorney is not involved in the case, which is now being handled by a special prosecutor, but it’s unlikely any new charges will be filed regarding this letter.


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