Jussie Smollett’s Family Condemns Assault: ‘This Was a Hate Crime’

HOLLYWOOD CA- NOVEMBER 01 Jussie Smollett performs onstage at Espolòn Celebrates Day of the Dead at Academy Nightclub

The actor's manager Brandon Z. Moore was reportedly on the phone with Smollett while the attack was happening. We want to be clear, this was a racial and homophobic hate crime. Our family thanks everyone for their prayers and the huge amount of love he has received.

The actor then checked himself into Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

The men wore ski masks and according to Smollett said, "Aren't you that f-t "Empire" N-word?" and yelled "This is MAGA country" and began beating him while continuing their vile tirade.

Jussie Smollett's family is speaking out days after the Empire star was targeted in an apparent hate crime attack.

They continued: "We are so grateful that God saw him through this cowardly attack alive".

The statement concludes, "Oftentimes ending fatally, these are inhumane acts of domestic terrorism and they should be treated as such".

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"Radical love is the only solution, but passivity will be our downfall", they wrote. "It certainly leads us to have questions for them'".

Chicago has one of the nation's most sophisticated and extensive video surveillance systems, including thousands of cameras on street poles, skyscrapers, buses and in train tunnels.

But police were confident that they would find more videos and photos. For about a minute, Smollett walked out of the frame and "reappears on another camera 'wearing a rope like a neck tie.'" The network also reported that Smollett has declined to hand over his cell phone to detectives.

Guglielmi told The Associated Press that detectives have looked at hundreds of hours of surveillance video from businesses and hotels in the heavily monitored area and are expanding the search to include footage from public buses and buildings beyond the scene's immediate vicinity in the hopes of spotting the individuals who match Smollett's description. "He explained to them why he had the rope around his neck, and the officers closed their body cams at his request, because they were in his private residence". Police added to ABC News that Smollett and Moore told them they were on the phone together.

Chicago Police have also confirmed that a threatening letter was sent to Fox Studios in Chicago, where Smollett works, on January 22.

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