Close call. Dave Chappelle was attacked during the Netflix Is a Joke festival at Los Angeles’ Hollywood Bowl on the evening of May 3, 2022. The comedian was performing a set when an unidentified audience member rushed the stage and tackled Chappelle to the ground before being apprehended by authorities.
The 48-year-old Saturday Night Live alum’s attack was captured in shocking footage, which you can view here. In the clip, the unnamed assailant was seen slamming his body into Chappelle before they both fell to the floor. The attacker stood up and then proceeded to run around the stage, dodging venue security until they eventually tackled him at the end of the stage.
According to the New York Post, the suspect was arrested by the Los Angeles Police Department and taken to a hospital to treat minor injuries sustained during the attack. It is unclear at this time what the severity of Chappelle’s injuries may have been. Officer Lizeth Lomeli, a spokesperson for the LAPD, later confirmed to the publication that the attacker was carrying a replica handgun that contained a switchblade inside of it. The unidentified suspect was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon.
Moments after the attack occurred, new footage emerged showing Chappelle reacting to the incident. The comedian leaned into the microphone and remarked, “that was a trans man,” seemingly referencing a series of controversies over similar comments he’s made about the LGBTQ community in the past. The comedian has once again come under fire for his comments online, where social media users continue to criticize his reaction as being transphobic.
Chappelle’s attack occurred just over a month after fellow comedian Chris Rock was slapped by actor Will Smith on stage at the 94th Academy Awards. At the time, it is unclear what prompted Chappelle’s attack, but some are already forming their theories that his assault may have been a copycat inspired by the infamous incident at the Oscars.
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