Jussie Smollett, popularly known for his lead role as Jamal Lyon in Fox Television show — Empire, was attacked around 2:00 am CT Tuesday morning in Chicago.
According to Chicago police reports on The Advocate, Jussie Smollett — who came nout as gay in 2015 on The Ellen DeGeneres Show — was stopped while reportedly exiting a Subway restaurant in the 300 block of East North Lower Water Street by two men wearing ski masks who began yelling racial and homophobic slurs.
“They then placed a noose around his neck and began to punch him after which they poured an unknown substance on him,” police added. After which Smollett took himself to the hospital.
“Given the severity of the allegations, we are taking this investigation very seriously and treating it as a possible hate crime. Detectives are currently working to gather video, identify potential witnesses and establish an investigative timeline,” CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said in a statement.
Twentieth Century Fox Television released a statement about the hate crime, saying “We are deeply saddened and outraged to learn that a member of our Empire family, Jussie Smollett, was viciously attacked last night.”
“We send our love to Jussie, who is resilient and strong, and we will work with law enforcement to bring these perpetrators to justice. The entire studio, network and production stand united in the face of any despicable act of violence and hate — and especially against one of our own.”
GLAAD, an organization that monitors representation of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in the media, said in a statement that it had reached out to Fox and Smollett’s team “to offer assistance as well as support for him.
According to updates from news outlets, Smollett was discharged from the hospital earlier today.
The Rustin Times sends heartfelt regards to him and hopes that he gets well soon.