Actor Jussie Smollett can rest easy now. A jury voted Thursday to convict his attacker.

Smollett, who staged a hate crime hoax in 2019, has been found guilty of five of six counts of disorderly conduct for making false reports to police.

This outcome, which is a good one, seemed far from a sure thing during the trial. At times it seemed the trial could have gone either way. Smollett’s defense seemed to pin its hopes on a jury nullification strategy. Juries also have a weird tendency to choose leniency for celebrities, even the ones most people have never heard of.

But the jurors in the Smollett trial made the right call, convicting the idiot actor of clearly lying about being attacked by Trump supporters in Chicago in the dead of a freezing cold night. There was overwhelming evidence proving Smollett was not attacked by two white men wearing “Make America Great Again” hats, or anything like what he represented. Rather, the evidence shows he was never really attacked at all, but that he conspired with associates to stage an "assault." The evidence shows he is actually a loathsome hate-crime hoaxer. By convicting him of nearly all the charges brought against him, the jury has brought to a close one the dumber and more despicable chapters in recent years.

As to the six charges brought against Smollett, they are as follows (via PBS NewsHour):

Count 1 accuses him of telling responding Chicago Police Officer Muhammed Baig at around 2:45 a.m., some 45 minutes after the purported attack, that he was the victim of a hate crime. He said two attackers put a rope around his neck.

Count 2 refers to Smollett telling the same officer he was a victim of a battery, describing attackers beating and pouring bleach on him.

Counts 3 and 4 are when Smollett made the same claims but to a different officer, Kimberly Murray, later that morning, at just before 6 a.m.

Count 5 accuses Smollett of again telling Murray at around 7:15 p.m. that he was the victim of a battery.

Count 6 refers to Smollett reporting on Feb. 14, 2019, to detective Robert Graves that he’d been a victim of an aggravated battery.

The jury convicted Smollett of counts one through five. Count six is the only one where they came back with a “not guilty” verdict.

Smollett now gets to live with the shame of having a jury decide that, beyond a reasonable doubt, he’s definitely a conniving, self-serving liar.

Then again, he seems just narcissistic enough to shrug the entire episode off, insisting all the while — against all evidence and facts — that he is innocent.

This brings me to the downer part of this story, which is: even though the jury got it right, and Smollett will now be held legally responsible for what he did in 2019, it’ll take a lot more than a guilty verdict to undo the damage of his stunt.

As I’ve noted before, the people who engage in these hate crime hoaxes actually do great harm to the communities from which they hail. They undercut the credibility of real and legitimate incidents of hatred and violence. They also create a culture of fear and paranoia within their own communities. We saw this in the days immediately following the supposed “attack” on Smollett.

If this can happen to a wealthy black man, it can happen to any black man!

The jury made the right decision Thursday, and it deserves credit for not being fooled by Smollett’s insane defense strategy or even his celebrity status. But there’s still a lot of work to do to repair the damage caused by his idiotic “This is MAGA country!” charade.