If you missed the news, comedy icon, Dave Chappelle was attacked by a crowd member during his most recent live performance. The incident occurred at the Netflix is a Joke Festival at the Hollywood Bowl in LA on Tuesday night, with the footage going viral on social media (watch above). According to The Sun, Los Angeles police have now identified the suspect as Isaiah Lee, 23, charged with felony assault with a deadly weapon. Chappelle is the latest A-list celebrity to find himself embroiled in violence, following a string of incidents involving the likes of Chris Rock, Will Smith and Mike Tyson.
The shocking footage shows Chappelle performing on stage when Lee charges from the audience and tackles him. Moments later, we see security rush to take down the assailant and pin him to the ground. LAPD officials stated Lee was armed with a replica gun that ejects a knife blade “when you discharge it correctly”, per NBC Los Angeles. It’s unknown whether Lee attempted to use the alleged weapon. However, authorities have disclosed Lee was booked into jail on US$30,000 (AU$42,105) bail.
Mess with Dave Chapelle 🥴 pic.twitter.com/XnZ2iL02UU
— 🇺🇸BellaLovesUSA🍊 (@Bellamari8mazz) May 4, 2022
It’s still unclear how he entered the venue, which forces the entire audience to go through metal detectors and supposedly bans mobile phones. We do know how he left the premises, with images surfacing of a battered and bruised Lee being led to an ambulance while strapped to an upright gurney.
Chappelle continued the show like a true professional by joking about how he “stomped a n––a backstage” after the attack. Jamie Foxx was one of the many celebrities in attendance and was even involved in apprehending the attacker. In another video shared online (above), Foxx can be heard telling the crowd Chappelle is an “absolute genius”, adding: “We’ve got to make sure we protect him at all times… For every comedian who comes out here, this means everything. You’re a genius. You’re a legend, and we’re not going to let nothing happen to you.”
After Chapelle got attacked, Chris Rock came on stage and hit us with possibly the joke of the year “was that Will Smith?” pic.twitter.com/ldWQ3h0eln
— Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) May 4, 2022
Colleague and friend Chris Rock was also on-stage at the event and made a joke asking if the attacker was Will Smith. Last month, Smith slapped Rock during the Oscars after the comic made fun of Jada Pinkett Smith’s shaved head.
Dave Chapelle has been smothered in controversy ever since his latest Netflix special, The Closer, was released in October 2021. He made numerous remarks about the trans community and has been the target of “cancel culture” ever since.
The Netflix is a Joke Festival is being held in Los Angeles until May 8.