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Jussie Smollett, actor in 'Empire,' hospitalized after possible hate crime attack, police say

Posted: 12:51 PM, Jan 29, 2019
Updated: 2019-01-29 17:55:43Z

Jussie Smollett, best known for his role as Jamal Lyon on the television show "Empire," was hospitalized after a possible hate crime attack, the Chicago Police Department said Tuesday.

"Overnight, the Chicago Police Department received a report of a possible racially-charged assault and battery involving a cast member of the television show Empire," the release states.

Though police did not specifically name Smollett as the victim, other news outlets reported earlier in the day that Smollett was hospitalized after the alleged attack.

The release goes on to say:

A 36 year old man was walking ... when two unknown offenders approached him and gained his attention by yelling out racial and homophobic slurs towards him. The offenders began to batter the victim with their hands about the face and poured an unknown chemical substance on the victim. At some point during the incident, one of the offender wrapped a rope around the victims (sic) neck.

According to the release, Smollett was released from Northwestern Hospital and is in good condition.

According to TMZ , it was two men who attacked Smollett and they screamed, "This is MAGA country," but this claim has not been verified by police or the actor.

A representative for GLAAD told CNN they have reached out to the "Empire" actor to offer assistance and support.

"Jussie is a true champion for LGBTQ people and is beloved by the community and allies around the world," a GLAAD spokesperson said in a statement.

Anyone with information is asked to call detectives at 312-747-8382.

CNN contributed to this report.