Dave Chappelle releases first statement about ‘unsettling’ attack

By | May 5, 2022

“As unfortunate and unsettling as the incident was, Chappelle went on with the show,” Carla Sims, Chappelle’s representative, said in a statement to CNN. “Jamie Foxx and Chris Rock helped calm the crowd with humor before Chappelle introduced the last and featured musical guests for the evening.”

The man who tackled Chappelle, identified as Isaiah Lee, had a knife and is in custody, Los Angeles police told CNN.

Video shows Chappelle being attacked onstage.

LAPD spokesperson Lizeth Lomeli told CNN that Chappelle “had finished his act and as he was exiting the stage, a male who was part of the audience jumped on the stage and tackle(d) this celebrity to the ground.”

Lee, 23, was arrested for felony assault with a deadly weapon and taken to a hospital for medical treatment, Lomeli said. The victim “was not injured as a result of the crime,” she said.

The weapon was a “knife blade,” Lomeli said.

LAPD Officer Rosario Cervantes told CNN the suspect had a knife that was a replica handgun.

Police later released photos of the weapon, which was collected and booked as evidence, according to a release from LAPD.

Sims said Chappelle is “fully cooperating” with the police investigation of the incident.

The motive of the apparent attack remains unclear.

It also wasn’t clear whether Chappelle filed an official police report.

Chappelle was performing at “Netflix is ​​a Joke: The Festival.”

“We care deeply about the safety of creators and we strongly defend the right of stand-up comedians to perform on stage without fear of violence,” a Netflix spokesperson told CNN in a statement.

CNN correspondent Rachel Crane was in the audience and described the bedlam after the attack.

According to Crane, the suspect was wearing a backpack. He was dragged on stage right, where he was being subdued, when Chappelle said, “Don’t do this on stage, take him off.”

CNN has reached out to the Los Angeles Fire Department and the Hollywood Bowl for more information.

CNN’s Jay McMichael and Brian Lowry contributed to this report. The story has been updated with additional information since it was first published.

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