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Since it was reported that Jussie Smollett was the victim of a homophobic and racist attack early Tuesday morning in Chicago, there have been theories that the attack was a hoax. Rumors have been circulating online that it was a “hook up gone wrong” or Smollett just made up the story for attention. In addition, the Chicago Police Department has released information to the press that has changed within hours.

Now, Smollett’s family has broken their silence.

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“We want to be clear, this was a racial and homophobic hate crime,” a statement from the family read in part. “Jussie has told the police everything from the very beginning. His story has never changed, and we are hopeful they will find these men and bring them to justice.”

The statement continued, “We are so grateful that God saw him through this cowardly attack alive. Jussie is a warrior whose light cannot be dimmed.”

More leaks have come out from the Chicago Police Department saying the 36-year-old actor will not give him their cell phone, but it’s not unusual for victims to not want to give their property to police.

On Tuesday, while walking to a Subway in Chicago, two men reportedly yelled racial and homophobic slurs at the actor after he exited a restaurant, investigators told The Hollywood Reporter. They allegedly punched and poured bleach on him while one of the suspects put a rope around his neck. As they fled the scene, Smollett told police they said, “This is MAGA country.”

Threatening letters directed at Smollett were reportedly sent to Fox Studios in Chicago last week. The cutout letters said, “You will die black f**.” See below:

Anyone with information about Tuesday’s reported attack is being asked to call Area Central Detectives at 312-747-8382. See the family’s full statement below:

“In the early hours of Tuesday morning, our beloved son and brother, Jussie, was the victim of a violent and unprovoked attack. We want to be clear, this was a racial and homophobic hate crime. Jussie has told the police everything from the very beginning. His story has never changed, and we are hopeful they will find these men and bring them to justice. Our family thanks everyone for their prayers and the huge amount of love he has received. We are thankful to our village for your immense support during this trying time. We are so grateful that God saw him through this cowardly attack alive. Jussie is a warrior whose light cannot be dimmed. We want people to understand these targeted hate crimes are happening to our sisters, brothers and our gender non-conforming siblings, many who reside within the intersection of multiple identities, on a monthly, weekly, and sometimes even daily basis all across our country. Oftentimes ending fatally, these are inhumane acts of domestic terrorism and they should be treated as such. They will continue to occur until we hold each other accountable. Make no mistake, words matter. Hateful words lead to hateful actions. Radical love is the only solution, but passivity will be our downfall. We, as a family, will continue to work for love, equity and justice until it reigns supreme in our nation and all over the world.

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