Questions swirl over 'Empire' star's alleged racist attack

Jussie Smollett told ABC News, "I've never been some stunt queen," but Chicago police are investigating whether two "persons of interest" were involved in the attack or whether it even happened.
6:22 | 02/15/19

Coming up in the next {{countdown}} {{countdownlbl}}

Coming up next:



Skip to this video now

Now Playing:


Related Extras
Related Videos
Video Transcript
Transcript for Questions swirl over 'Empire' star's alleged racist attack
These two persons of interest caught on surveillance camera now being questioned by Chicago police in connection with the investigation into a possible hate crime against actor just seasonal and some. I could only go off of their words. I mean. Who. Says. In part. This maggot country. Ty is a noose around your neck. And pours bleach org. Police now investigating whether the two individuals were involved in the attack. Or whether the attack happened at all. I'm evidence historically I'm never been some media or that's not who I am. I don't look for. That type of attention. Authorities revealing that one of the persons of interest had appeared on snow lets hit show empire and tonight ABC's Alex Perez is in Chicago. Authorities are talking to those two people of interest to investigators were able to track them down using cameras transportation records and information provided by just seemed small it himself now authorities say they've known about them for some time but we're not able to talk to them. Until they returned from Nigeria last night you know authorities carried out a raid. At their home taking shoes electronic devices and other items that could be key to the investigation. Both of them authorities say are cooperating. Investigators say today they once again interviewed just a small ads so far. No one has been charged. Tonight the attorney for the two persons of interest says her client's notes molest and are horrified by what happened to him. And are baffled as to why they are people of interest adding they are not guilty. In his only TV interviews mold let set down with ABC news the 36 year old describing what he says happened two weeks ago when he says he was violently attacked around 2 AM. Used his Chicago part. What happened that night Tennessee as I was crossing the intersection heard empire. It to empire. And Amy empire. And kept walking and tired. And hi a side turned around and I say Jesus into me and turn around and I see. He attack her. Masked. And he saved this maggot country. Punches me right in the face upon us and Iraq. And then we started tussling there was a second person involved who was kicking me my back. And can to stop. And they ran off he felt like minutes but it probably was like thirty seconds honestly I can't tell you honestly. I noticed the rope around my neck and I started screaming. And I see if there's a grope around my secret and global. Within days police released that surveillance image of the two persons of interest captured on the same street. The actor saying he was sure those were his attackers. I was like okay we're getting somewhere. You know nonsense so. Yeah. I don't I don't have any. Doubt in my mind. That. That's very. Never do. The actor is best known for his breakout role want empire now when it's the theme that's. He plays Jamal lie in the middle son of a musical dynasty. The character mics we'll let you can openly gay thing. Tonight's developments only adding to the swirl of questions surrounding the reported attack including Weiss we'll let refuse to turn over cell phone. We had to give the phone records. Which stated originally asked for my phone records they asked for my phone. When you give my phone to the tech for three to four hours I'm sorry but it. I'm I don't do that funny because I have private. Pictures and videos and numbers my partner's number my fan these numbers. My past makes them from my friends numbers marked private emails are private songs my private voice memos. I don't know what that's going to be to hand over my phone. Four. And honestly by then inaccurate false statements had already been put out there. Tonight police confirm record shows the let was on the phone with his manager at the time he says the attack happens. Other speculation involved the fact that there was no video of the attack despite it taking place in an area filled with surveillance cameras. It's like the camera facing north how's that might issue I don't own that Cameron like I'm not a detective. Will how how would I know that. What part do I have to play in which way that the camera is facing. How. How's that not a burden to bear. As a high profile openly gay black man snow let says this wasn't the first time he's been targeted I get threatened all the time. And. Twitter and is to Graham Indians and things like actually put it. You know. I'm a public figure. I'm. Been very outspoken. Compared sometimes may be too outspoken. One week before the attack on January 22 police confirm a letter was sent to the studio in Chicago. We're empire is filmed full of threatening language and laced with a powdery substance later determined to be crushed Tylenol. It had a stick figure hanging from a tree with a gun pointing towards with the words that say it's small it Jesse you will die black. And a return address. There was no address that the return address it and B grade you know like caps baca. For now police are working to cover every angles surrounding what's the let says happens. I won't never been the man that this did not happen to. I am forever changed. And of course our Alex present Chicago will have the very latest on this case on GMA in the morning.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

{"duration":"6:22","description":"Jussie Smollett told ABC News, \"I've never been some stunt queen,\" but Chicago police are investigating whether two \"persons of interest\" were involved in the attack or whether it even happened.","mediaType":"default","section":"ABCNews/Nightline","id":"61095034","title":"Questions swirl over 'Empire' star's alleged racist attack","url":"/Nightline/video/questions-swirl-empire-stars-alleged-racist-attack-61095034"}