Chicago police are investigating reports of a horrific racist and homophobic assault on Empire star Jussie Smollett, who was allegedly beaten and placed in a noose on Tuesday morning.
Now, ThatGrapeJuice.Net has released a photo of a letter which was sent to Fox Studios in Chicago eight days ago with cut out letters spelling, “You will die black f**” alongside a drawing that appears to be of two men and a gun.
The envelope that the letter was encased in was addressed to ‘Jussie Smollett, Empire’ and also read ‘MAGA.’
Images of the letter can be found HERE.
The Chicago Tribune reports the television actor, 36, was approached by two people around 2am on Tuesday.
The pair reportedly grabbed Smollett’s attention by hurling racist and homophobic slurs before beating him, covering him in an unknown substance, and tying a noose around his neck. The offenders then fled the scene.
TMZ claims the offenders yelled “This is MAGA country” after the assault, but a police statement obtained by The Daily Beast states there’s no report of that particular language being used.
Smollett transported himself to Northwestern Memorial Hospital where he was said to be in a good condition. TMZ reports he was discharged later in the morning.
Chicago Police Department spokesperson Anthony Guglielmi says investigators are looking into the incident as a potential hate crime and are canvasing the area for any video.
“Given the severity of the allegations, we are taking this investigation very seriously and treating it as a possible hate crime.”
A source told Entertainment Tonight that Smollett is now physically OK but is emotionally shaken. Smollett has also received plenty of public messages of support from his Empire castmates and other celebs.
“Jussie was walking when two guys started yelling racial and homophobic slurs at the Empire star,” the source says. “Jussie was then attacked by the men and was repeatedly hit. Jussie tried to protect himself and at one point the men poured a substance on him believed to be bleach and one of the guys put a rope around his neck. After some time the men fled the scene and Jussie went to the hospital. Jussie is mostly physically OK with some scrapes and bruises, but he’s more emotionally shook up.”
Fox has stepped up security measures for cast and members of production following the horrific attack.