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Man Attacks Dave Chappelle on Stage at Hollywood Bowl
By City News Service
Published May 4, 2022

Comedian Dave Chappelle (File)

A man who police say was armed with a replica handgun when he tackled comedian Dave Chappelle on stage at the Hollywood Bowl was behind bars today on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon.

Isaiah Lee, 23, of Los Angeles, was being held in lieu of $30,000 bail following his arrest Tuesday night. Authorities said Lee rushed the stage at the Bowl around 10:45 p.m. Tuesday while Chappelle was performing as part of the Netflix Is A Joke Festival.

Online video showed Chappelle being thrown to the ground while the venue’s security staff rushed on stage to subdue his assailant. Among those running to protect Chappelle was actor/comedian Jamie Foxx. According to the LAPD, the suspect was in possession of a replica handgun equipped with a retractable knife blade.

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Social media reports from witnesses indicated that the suspect tried to scramble backstage after the attack, but he was forcefully subdued by security. Subsequent aerial footage showed the bloodied assailant being placed on a gurney and taken away in an ambulance.

Chappelle appeared to recover his composure in video footage after the attack. He joked, “It was a trans man,” a reference to controversy surrounding some of Chappelle’s jokes in a previous Netflix special that some condemned as transphobic. He also thanked Foxx for helping to subdue the suspect.

The attack was eerily reminiscent of actor Will Smith’s assault of comedian Chris Rock during this year’s Oscar ceremony. Smith walked on stage at the Dolby Theatre and smacked Rock in the face after Rock made a joke about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.

Chris Rock, who performed earlier in the show Tuesday night, came on the Hollywood Bowl stage after the assault on Chappelle and joked, “Was that Will Smith?” Stephanie Wash, a journalist with ABC, tweeted.

It was unclear how the suspect was able to carry a weapon into the venue. On Instagram, Lee goes by the moniker “Noname_Trapper,” which is the name of a rapper whose work includes a 2020 song titled “Dave Chappelle.”

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Lee posted a short video on Instagram Tuesday, saying nothing but showing him wearing the same hooded sweatshirt in which he is pictured wearing while handcuffed to the paramedics’ gurney Tuesday night after the attack. Lee says nothing on the short video, but he used a video filter showing himself with devil-like horns on his head and blood trickling from his nose — also similar to the blood seen on his face following his detainment at the Bowl.

Categories: News (Entertainment)
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