“Empire” star Jussie Smollett has opened up about the racist and homophobic attack on him in downtown Chicago.
Smollett was attacked on Tuesday morning when he leaving a restaurant in Chicago. Two men shouted racial and homophobic slurs towards him before they attacked him.
In a statement to Essence, the 35-year-old black and openly gay actor said he is “ok”.
“My body is strong but my soul is stronger. More importantly, I want to say thank you. The outpouring of love and support from my village has meant more than I will ever be able to truly put into words,” he added.
During the attack, the suspects punched him and poured an unknown chemical substance over him. One of them even wrapped a rope around the actor’s neck.
Smollett, who was hospitalised for his injuries, told the police that the attackers yelled pro-“Make America Great Again” (MAGA) comments during the attack.
In his statement, the actor disputed rumours circulating on social media that he has been less than cooperative with the police and has changed his story time and again.
“I am working with authorities and have been 100% factual and consistent on every level. Despite my frustrations and deep concern with certain inaccuracies and misrepresentations that have been spread, I still believe that justice will be served,” he said.
“As my family stated, these types of cowardly attacks are happening to my sisters, brothers and non-gender conforming siblings daily. I am not and should not be looked upon as an isolated incident. We will talk soon and I will address all details of this horrific incident, but I need a moment to process,” he concluded.
On “Empire”, Smollett plays musician Jamal Lyon, the gay son of Lucious (Terrence Howard) and Cookie (Taraji P Henson).