As details on the horrific Chicago attack on 36-year-old Empire star Jussie Smollett continue to roll out, many people have already begun casting the ultimate blame on the current resident of the White House.
According to the Chicago Police Department, Smollett was assaulted by two suspects who called him “that f—t Empire n—r,”early Tuesday morning. Smollett told police that the suspects hit him in the face around 2 a.m. and “poured an unknown chemical substance” on him, according to the statement.
“At some point during the incident, one of the offenders wrapped a rope around the victim’s neck,” the police said in a statement. “The offenders fled the scene.”
Although TMZ reported that the attackers shouted “This is MAGA country,” Chicago police told the Daily Beast, “There is no report of that being said.”
Despite the police department’s claim that this was not a Trump-related attack, people on social media can’t help but equate the apparent rise in hate crimes with the “racist in chief.”
According to a recent FBI report, hate crimes in the U.S. have increased 17 percent in 2017 from the year before.
About 60 percent of the crimes reported occurred on the basis of race, ethnicity and ancestry. About 16 percent were attacks on sexual orientation.
Empire’s home network released a statement after the attack:
“We are deeply saddened and outraged to learn that a member of our Empire family... was viciously attacked last night,” a statement from 20th Century Fox Television and Fox Entertainment read. “We send our love to Jussie, who is resilient and strong, and we will work with law enforcement to bring these perpetrators to justice.”
(Photos from left: Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images, Gary Gershoff/WireImage/Getty Images)