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'Empire' Actor Brutally Attacked In Hate Crime

Authorities are investigating an assault on 'Empire' actor Jussie Smollett as a 'possible hate crime' after two men yelled homophobic and racial slurs, and wrapped a rope around his neck. 

The 36-year-old African-American television actor was walking down a street in Chicago at approximately 2am when he was approached by two males. The offenders allegedly attacked the victim with their hands and poured an unknown chemical substance on him. A rope was then wrapped around the victim's neck.

The offenders reportedly ran from the scene leaving Smollett to find his own way to a local hospital. 

"We are deeply saddened and outraged to learn that a member of our 'Empire' family, Jussie Smollett, was viciously attacked last night," a 20th Century Fox Television and Fox Entertainment representative 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."

Detectives are gathering video footage from the area and are looking for witnesses.

Smollett's friends and colleagues have expressed their shock at the brutal attack, with many condemning the attack on Twitter.

Authorities are yet to find any evidence to help identify the perpetrators. However, police were able to retrieve the rope that was wrapped around Smollett's neck during the attack, which will undergo extensive testing.

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