Empire star Jussie Smollett was attacked early Tuesday morning in what Chicago police are calling a possible hate crime.
One of the attackers wrapped a rope around his neck before both fled the scene in the early hours of Tuesday.
Two “unknown offenders approached him and gained his attention by yelling out racial and homophobic slurs towards him,” according to a statement from the Chicago Police Department. “The offenders began to batter the victim with their hands about the face and poured an unknown chemical substance on the victim.”
Smollett was hospitalized for his injuries. A rep for Smollett did not immediately respond to a request for his condition update.
In a statement, the Chicago Police Department confirmed they are treating the case as a “possible hate crime.” The statement says that Smollett is currently in “good condition” while TMZ reports that he was released from the hospital Tuesday morning.
Smollett, who plays a gay character in Empire, had earlier posted on Instagram that he was tired having arrived in Chicago after “seven hours on a plane for a two hour flight”.
Twentieth Century Fox Television issued a statement in support of the actor.
“We are deeply saddened and outraged to learn that a member of our Empire family, Jussie Smollett, was viciously attacked last night,” 20th Century Fox TV and Fox Entertainment said in a statement.
“We send our love to Jussie, who is resilient and strong, and we will work with law enforcement to bring these perpetrators to justice. The entire studio, network and production stands united in the face of any despicable act of violence and hate — and especially against one of our own.”