Jussie Smollett Skips NAACP Image Awards Pre-Show Ceremony

Jussie Smollett (Credit: Deposit Photos)

Jussie Smollett skipped the NAACP Image Awards dinner on Friday night in Los Angeles, where several untelevised awards were handed out.

The Empire actor was nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series, but lost to Jesse Williams of Grey’s Anatomy, according to ABC News.

Smollett, who saw the hate crime hoax charges against him dropped Tuesday by Chicago prosecutors, plays Jamal Lyon on the Fox series. He has been nominated in the supporting actor category for four consecutive years and won in 2017.

Read More: ‘Empire’ Ratings Dip Again After Charges Against Jussie Smollett Are Dropped

The Empire star flew to Los Angeles on Wednesday, prompting speculation that he would attend the dinner, and tonight’s ceremony at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood, which will be televised on TV One.

Image Awards host Anthony Anderson recently said he was rooting for Smollett to win in the category and hoped to see him at Saturday night’s show.

For months now, Smollett has made headlines after filing a police report on Jan. 29, saying he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack on a Chicago street.

Chicago police accused the actor of staging the assault to get attention, and he was charged with 16 felony counts of disorderly conduct.

Read More: Trump Calls for FBI to Review ‘Outrageous’ Jussie Smollett Case

Following Tuesday’s surprise announcement that prosecutors had dropped all the charges, Smollett told reporters he has been “truthful and consistent on every single level since day one.”

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel disagreed, and called the final outcome of the case a “whitewash of justice.”

President Donald Trump also criticized the decision to dismiss the charges, and said it was “an embarrassment to our nation” on Twitter.

The FBI and Department of Justice are now reviewing the case.

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