Suspect in Dave Chappelle Attack Won’t Face Felony Charges, Los Angeles DA Says

The case has been referred to the Los Angeles City Attorney’s office for possible misdemeanor charges

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The man who is accused of tackling Dave Chappelle on stage at the Hollywood Bowl on Tuesday will not face felony charges after the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office declined to pursue them.

The suspect could still however face misdemeanor charges, the DA’s office said in a statement Thursday.

“The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office has referred the case to the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office for misdemeanor filing consideration. After reviewing the evidence, prosecutors determined that while criminal conduct occurred, the evidence as presented did not constitute felony conduct. The District Attorney’s Office does not prosecute misdemeanor crimes within the city of Los Angeles,” a spokesperson for the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office said in a statement.

The Los Angeles Police Department on Wednesday said that the man who tackled Chappelle onstage was carrying a fake gun that featured a blade that folded out, which he pointed at the comedian before security subdued the suspect. The LAPD also released an image of the weapon, which you can see here.

The Los Angeles DA’s office did not respond to TheWrap about how the alleged weapon played into the decision not to pursue felony charges.

On Wednesday, the LAPD said Hollywood officers responded to the scene and took control of the suspect, who was then cleared to be seen and treated by medical personnel. He was identified as 23-year-old Isaiah Lee of Los Angeles. He was being held with bail set at $30,000.

“The replica handgun that also contained a knife blade was recovered and later processed as evidence,” the LAPD’s arrest report said. “The suspect was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon. He was transported to a local hospital to treat injuries sustained during the altercation with security.”

Videos taken by audience members and posted online show the man running onstage during Chappelle’s appearance at the “Netflix is a Joke Festival” at the iconic outdoor venue in Hollywood. Witnesses reported that Chapelle fought with the man on the floor before he ran off behind an onstage screen with Chappelle giving chase and security eventually subduing him.

Chappelle released a statement through a rep on the incident Wednesday, saying the historic performance, which tied him with Monty Python for the most headlined shows by a comedian at the Hollywood Bowl, won’t be “overshadowed” by the incident.

The Los Angeles Philharmonic, which runs the Hollywood Bowl, said it could not comment on specifics of the incident with an investigation ongoing but that “the safety of our artists, visitors and staff is the LA Phil’s top priority.”

Netflix also released a statement.

“We care deeply about the safety of creators and we strongly defend the right of stand-up comedians to perform on stage without fear of violence,” a Netflix spokesperson said.