Smollett didn’t want the extra intrusion.
As we reported, Empire star Jussie Smollett was assaulted in Chicago late on Monday (January 28). Smollett was grabbing some grub at Subway at around 2 AM. While outside, two men wearing masks reportedly screamed out, “Aren’t you that fa**ot “Empire” n*****?” They then attacked Smollett, who attempted to fight back but was overwhelmed. The two men beat him down, fracturing his rib. Before the left, they allegedly poured bleach on him, placed a rope around his neck and exclaimed, “This is MAGA country.” Smollett took himself to the hospital at the time, but has been discharged since.
Prior to the attack, Fox Studios in Chicago was sent a threatening homophobic letter addressed to Smollett. The letter was sent a week before the attack. According to TMZ, Fox stepped up security for the entire cast after the letter was received. They also offered Smollett off the clock security to protect him at all times, but the actor turned down the extra muscle. TMZ claims their sources say Smollett felt that extra security would be intrusive while shadowing him off the clock. The FBI and Chicago police are currently investigating the threatening message, attempting to discover if the letter and the attack are connected.