A new and unexpected turn has changed the game for Jussie Smollett now that a court has ordered for the actor to be released from jail. Last week, Smollett faced a judge and received his sentence after being convicted of five counts related to an attack on him back in 2019. The former Empire actor stands accused of staging the assault for fame, but Smollett and his loved ones have denied that he had anything to do with it.

Smollett was given 150 days in jail, a fine, and over a year on probation, and in his first days behind bars, his family has been relentless in petitioning for his release.

Jussie Smollett was released from jail Wednesday following six nights behind bars after an appeals court agreed with his lawyers that he should be free pending the appeal of his conviction for lying to police about a racist and homophobic attack as reprted by AP News.

The former “Empire” actor walked out of the Cook County Jail surrounded by security. He did not comment as he got into an awaiting SUV, but his attorneys said Smollett, who is Black and gay, was the target of a racist justice system and people playing politics.

The appeals court ruling came after a Cook County judge sentenced Smollett last week to immediately begin serving 150 days in jail for his conviction on five felony counts of disorderly conduct for lying to police. In an outburst immediately after the sentence was handed down, Smollett proclaimed his innocence and said “I am not suicidal. And if anything happens to me when I go in there, I did not do it to myself. And you must all know that.”

The “Free Jussie” movement is underway with a slew of supporters, and according to the Associated Press, today (March 16), Smollett will be released from jail. According to the outlet, the appeals court sided with the actor’s lawyers and agreed that Smollett “should be released pending the appeal of his conviction for lying to police about a racist and homophobic attack.”

“Smollett’s attorneys had argued that he would have completed the sentence by the time the appeal process was completed and that Smollett could be in danger of physical harm if he remained locked up in Cook County Jail.”