Comedian Tehran Von Ghasri said he desperately tried to alert security to Dave Chappelle’s alleged attacker after he snuck into the VIP area — but the guards “dismissed” him.
“Not only was I there, I was right there,” Ghasri told TMZ of his VIP spot at Tuesday night’s Hollywood Bowl show.
“The assailant actually slid in right next to me and walked towards the stage,” he said of allegedly seeing 23-year-old wannabe rapper Isaiah Lee suspiciously entering the VIP area packed with A-listers.
“I tried to alert the security but they kinda dismissed me, like they weren’t paying attention,” he said.
“I tried to warn, like, ‘Hey, this person jumped over the barrier and you should probably keep your eye on them,’” he told the outlet’s videographer.
“Within 30 seconds of that, this guy got on stage and ran — he jumped on stage and ran towards Chappelle, and there was no time to even react,” he recalled.
Ghasri also said he feared the world could have “lost an institution of comedy” if Lee —who police say had a gun-shaped knife — hadn’t tripped while allegedly lunging at Chappelle.
“Honestly, if the assailant wasn’t clumsy and Dave Chappelle hadn’t been working out, this could have been really bad,” he said.
“This guy would have reached in his bag and we would have lost an institution of comedy. Chappelle’s the GOAT,” he said, using an acronym for “greatest of all time.”
“We wouldn’t be crying for the assailant — we’d be crying at the loss of a Dave Chappelle, possibly. So thank goodness worse didn’t happen.”
Ghasri praised Chappelle’s own security and management for being “on it” and immediately leaping into action, tackling the suspect — who was seen with a snapped arm and beaten face as he was taken to an ambulance.
Chappelle, 48, bragged to the audience that he had “just stomped a n— backstage,” and later reportedly praised his celebrity pals for helping.
“I felt good my friends broke his arm. I felt good. How bad does a n— have to be that Jon Stewart would stomp him!” Chappelle reportedly said later.
The attack sparked further outrage Thursday when Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said the on-camera attack did not warrant felony charges.
Lee was instead hit with four misdemeanors: one of battery, one for possessing a deadly weapon with intent to assault, another for unauthorized access to the stage area during a performance and a fourth for commission of an act that delays the event or interferes with the performer.