Empire star Jussie Smollett has reportedly been hospitalized following an apparent hate crime in Chicago. Huffington Post’s Philip Lewis tweeted out a statement released by the Chicago Police Department saying that “two unknown offenders” yelled “racial and homophobic slurs towards [Smollett].”
They then began to “batter the victim with their hands about the face and poured an unknown chemical substance on the victim.” One of them wrapped a rope around Smollett’s neck during the attack, according to the statement.
The attackers invoked language relating to Trump, TMZ reports, as they told the 36-year-old, “This is MAGA country.”
The assailants were white men wearing ski masks who approached Smollett after he left a Subway, as per TMZ. Someone reportedly shouted at him, “Aren’t you that f****t Empire n****r?”
The attackers beat Smollett and fractured his rib. Thankfully, the Alien: Covenant and The Mighty Ducks actor is in “good condition” after he took himself to Northwestern Hospital. Read more in Lewis’ tweet below:
Smollett came out as gay in 2015 during an interview with Ellen DeGeneres. His character on Empire, Jamal Lyon, has relationships with both men and women, which he and Empire creator Lee Daniels told TV Insider was a purposeful choice to open up the conversation on sexual fluidity.