NEW YORK, NY - MAY 15: Jussie Smollett, Taraji P. Henson, Terrence Howard and Lee Daniels attend the 2017 Fox Programming Presentation party at the Wollman Rink in Central Park on May 15, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Anthony Behar/Fox/PictureGroup)

(Photo credit: Anthony Behar/Fox/PictureGroup)

'Empire' Cast Member Alleges Homophobic Attack In Chicago

January 29, 2019

CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago police have opened a hate crime investigation after a man the department identified as a 36-year-old cast member of the television show "Empire" alleged he was physically attacked by men who shouted racial and homophobic slurs.

Police wouldn't release the actor's name, but a statement from the Fox studio and network on which "Empire" airs identified him Tuesday as Jussie Smollett.

A statement from Chicago police says the man said he was walking downtown about 2 a.m. Tuesday when two men approached him shouting, then struck him in the face and poured an "unknown chemical substance" on him before one wrapped a rope around his neck.

Police say he was hospitalized in good condition.