“Cool. Were you there that night?”
“Reliable Sources” host Brian Stelter was viciously ratioed Tuesday after tweeting that “we may never know what really happened” in the case of suspected hate-crime hoaxer Jussie Smollett.
After news broke Tuesday afternoon that prosecutors had dropped all charges – 16 felony counts of disorderly conduct for making a false report – against Smollett, Stelter went on CNN to say that the public might never learn what really happened the night the “Empire” actor claims he was attacked.
WATCH: Jussie Smollett Crushed by President’s Unexpected Response to His Attack
Stelter doubled-down on the assertion in a tweeted reply to Washington Examiner contributor Tiana Lowe, who argued that Smollett’s “hoax” was “documented with checks and videos.”
“Cool. Were you there that night? Smollett’s camp says he was the victim of a hate crime,” Stelter said. “The police dispute that. There isn’t video of the alleged attack. Thus, we may never know what really happened.”
Cool. Were you there that night? Smollett's camp says he was the victim of a hate crime. The police dispute that. There isn't video of the alleged attack. Thus, we may never know what really happened.
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) March 26, 2019
That’s when the blowback began for CNN’s chief media correspondent. Blaze Media Director of Engagement Jason Howerton chronicled the epic ratio-ing endured by Stelter.
UPDATE: The ratio is growing more powerful and may be unable to be contained at this point pic.twitter.com/MUVlhAaiQe
— Jason Howerton (@jason_howerton) March 26, 2019
Replies were harsh in their condemnation of the CNN’s host take. “Smollett said his “attackers” were white. Now his attorney says they’re the Nigerian brothers,” Lowe wrote in a tweet. “The prosecutors *STILL* concede that his volunteer service & bond forfeiture is ‘just disposition,’ indicating that they continue to view him as culpable of some offense. Because he is.”
WATCH: Hilarious Smollett Judge Judy Mashup Banned From Twitter
National Review senior political correspondent Jim Geraghty’s reaction was even more acerbic. “You should not be hosting a show entitled ‘Reliable Sources,'” he tweeted.
As of the publication of this article, Stelter’s tweet has garnered more than 5,000 comments, to only 168 likes.
Smollett, 36, a black and gay star of Fox’s “Empire” TV show, reported to Chicago Police Department on Jan. 29 that he was assaulted by two masked men who called him racist and homophobic slurs and shouted “This is ‘MAGA’ country!” He said his assailants poured what he believed was bleach on him and put a noose around his neck.
Police investigated the incident as a “possible hate crime,” and many other celebrities, activists, politicians, and journalists rushed to condemn not just the attackers but the supposed state of Trump’s America.
In February, Smollett was arrested and charged with staging the crime in an apparent effort to garner attention and sympathy. Fox would cut ties with the actor shortly after, removing him from the final two episodes of the season.
WATCH: Jussie Smollett Outside The Courthouse