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Dave Chappelle Speaks Out After Hollywood Bowl Attack, Says He Spoke To Suspect
Dave Chappelle said he insisted on talking to Isaiah Lee, the suspect in the Hollywood Bowl attack, to ask him why.
Just days after Dave Chappelle was tackled on stage by an allegedly armed man, the comic took to the stage again to talk about the incident.
During a secret show at the Comedy Store in Los Angeles on Thursday, Chappelle thanked those who have supported him following the attack, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
"A lot of people love me, it turns out," Chappelle, 48, said.
He recalled the incident happening so fast that he could not see the suspect’s face. However, the comedian said, he managed to grab a hold of his hair.
Chappelle was performing stand-up at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles on Tuesday night when 23-year-old Isaiah Lee allegedly jumped on stage. Police say Lee was armed with a replica gun that had an ejectable knife blade attached to it when he tackled Chappelle to the ground. He had been charged with felony assault with a deadly weapon, authorities confirmed to Oxygen.com; the charge has now been downgraded to a misdemeanor.
Chappelle divulged during his secret set that he insisted on talking to Lee and that he convinced security to allow him to do so.
“I needed to talk to him,” Chappelle exclaimed, explaining that he asked Lee why he allegedly attacked him.
Chappelle said that Lee told him that the attack was meant to bring attention to the fact that Lee's grandmother had been forced out of her Brooklyn neighborhood by gentrification.
Chappelle told the audience that he feels Lee may be mentally ill.
During Thursday’s secret set, Chappelle was joined by fellow comic Chris Rock, who was also present during Tuesday’s incident. On Tuesday, Rock had joked on stage that Chappelle's attacker was perhaps Will Smith. During this year's Academy Awards ceremony, the Oscar-winning Smith slapped Rock on live television in reaction to a joke about his wife.
"At least you got smacked by someone of repute!" Chappelle told Rock, according to The Hollywood Reporter. "I got smacked by a homeless guy with leaves in his hair."
Rock replied that he got hit by the "softest" rapper ever.
The comedian wrapped up his secret set by looking at Sean “Diddy” Combs, who was present in the audience, and stating, “I am in the [place] where you sat in the car with Biggie Smalls as he died. I hate this city.”