“And above all I fought the fuck back.”
Surveillance footage purportedly shows “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett, who claimed last week that two masked men referenced President Donald Trump’s “Make American Great Again” campaign slogan in a homophobic and racist attack against him, holding a Subway sandwich after the alleged assault.
Chicago reporter Rafer Weigel tweeted Friday that a police source told local outlet Fox 32 that Smollett was seen in the footage still carrying the sandwich as he returned to his building after being attacked.
Smollett’s story has divided commenters along ideological lines. For many liberals, the attack on the openly gay actor is a damning indictment of the racial climate engendered by the Trump presidency.
Meanwhile, many on the right doubt the veracity of his claims. Conservatives wonder if Smollett is exploiting progressive fears with a made up story.
The complicating information about what the surveillance footage shows is sure to add more fuel to the fire. Skeptics have already questioned how the star of Fox’s “Empire” kept a grip on his sandwich while, by his account, being beaten, having a noose put around his neck, and getting doused with bleach.
Smollett addressed the alleged hate crime committed against him during a Saturday night appearance at West Hollywood venue Troubadour.
“Just because there’s a been a lot of stuff that has been said about me that’s absolutely not true,” the former child actor said while reading from a piece of paper. “There’s just a couple of points that I wanted to make really quick.”
“I was bruised but my ribs were not cracked. They were not broken. I went to the doctor immediately. My guest drove me. I was not hospitalized,” he continued. “Both my doctors in LA and Chicago cleared me to perform. They said to take care, obviously.”
"Above all, I fought the f*ck back."
Jussie Smollett addressed the hate crime committed against him & dispelled rumors about the incident in his first appearance since the attack.
At the Troubadour last night.
— 𝓖𝓮𝓶𝓶𝓪 𝓔𝓵𝓮𝓪𝓷𝓸𝓻💎™ (@Lady_Star_Gem) February 3, 2019
“And above all I fought the fuck back,” Smollett concluded as the crowd broke into raucous cheers.
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