Empire actor and musician Jussie Smollett performed at his first show in Los Angeles, since his reported attack last week.
During the performance, he tearfully told his fans that he is not fully healed but he is doing OK. Popularly known as Jamal Lyon on the Fox drama series Empire, Jussie was allegedly attacked by two men who were “yelling out racial and homophobic slurs.” The incident that occurred last week (31.01.2019) has seen the Chicago police get involved, investigating the matter as a possible hate crime. In his account of the incident, Smollett also said one of his attackers put a rope around his neck and poured an unknown chemical substance on him. Smollett identifies as gay and plays a gay character on the series.
CNN reported that during his concert Saturday night (02.02.19) at West Hollywood’s Troubadour Club, Smollett told fans that he wanted to clarify that following the attack, he was bruised but his ribs were neither cracked nor broken. He also said that he went to the doctor immediately, but he wasn’t hospitalized, and physicians in both Chicago and Los Angeles cleared him to perform at the concert.
Smollett thanked the more than 300 people gathered at the event and struck a defiant note. “I had to be here tonight, Y’all, I couldn’t let those (expletives) … win,” he said, referring to his attackers. “Above all I fought … (expletive) back.”
He reiterated his calls for love, telling fans they needed to do away with hate because love is the only thing they had.
According to reports, investigations are still ongoing and Chicago police are said to have released photos of potential persons of interest in the attack and are asking for the public’s help in identifying who they are. Investigators said they have a video of Smollett entering the hotel after the alleged attack with what appears to be a noose around his neck.