Kevin Hart: Beating of Chappelle Attacker 'Needed to Happen'

Howard Stern, on the other hand, sees hypocrisy in how things were handled
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted May 6, 2022 11:43 AM CDT
2 Very Different Takes on Response to Chappelle Attacker
This photo combination provided by the Los Angeles Police Department shows the fake handgun with the real knife blade inside that was taken from the man who attacked comedian Dave Chappelle at the Hollywood Bowl, on Tuesday.   (Los Angeles Police Dept. via AP)

Video footage showed people punching and kicking the man who rushed Dave Chappelle on stage at the Hollywood Bowl on Tuesday. Photos also showed the suspect with a very clearly broken arm. "It's one of those things that needed to happen, though," Kevin Hart told guest host Mike Birbiglia on Thursday's episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live. (Kimmel is out with COVID.) "Do you want people to continue to think that they can cross that line and break the barrier of entertainer [and audience]?" the comedian asked, per Variety. "Somebody getting their a-- whooped sends a message out to other people" to deter them from similar behavior. "Sometimes you gotta take a lot of steps back to take a step forward."

Chappelle apparently feels the same way. "I felt good my friends broke his arm," he told attendees of an after-party at a West Hollywood hotel, according to audio obtained by TMZ. "How bad does a [N-word] have to be that Jon Stewart would stomp him." Though Stewart attended the "Dave Chappelle and Friends" show, part of the Netflix Is a Joke comedy festival, he did not appear to be involved in the dust-up, per the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. However, actor-comedian Jamie Foxx and rapper Busta Rhymes were involved, the outlet reports. Their behavior was not condoned by radio host Howard Stern, who questioned why celebrities treated the suspect so differently than Will Smith when he attacked Chris Rock at the Oscars.

"They broke his arms and hands so bad," he said of the suspect, an aspiring rapper with the stage name NoName Trapper, who released a song titled "Dave Chappelle" in 2020, per People. But audience members "didn't break Will's hands, they shook 'em," he continued, per the Post-Gazette. "That's wrong and they all should be ashamed of themselves." The suspect, 23-year-old Isiah Lee, who allegedly carried a replica gun with a built-in knife, faces four misdemeanor charges of battery, possession of a weapon with intent to assault, unauthorized access to stage area during a performance, and commission of an act that delays an event or interferes with a performer. (Read more Dave Chappelle stories.)

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