'Django Unchained' Actress Handcuffed by LAPD for ... PDA?

By Brett Snider, Esq. on September 15, 2014 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

"Django Unchained" Actress Daniele Watts was detained and handcuffed by the LAPD, apparently for showing affection in public.

Watts and her boyfriend Brian James Lucas (also known as celebrity chef Cheffy Be*Live) claim that police detained the couple on Thursday because they suspected the pair to be a prostitute and her client, CNN reports. For its part, the LAPD explains that officers were responding to a complaint that a couple matching their descriptions were "involved in a sexual act inside a Mercedes with the vehicle door open."

So what caused the "Django Unchained" actress to be detained?

PDA or Public Sex?

There seems to be some disagreement about what Watts and her boyfriend were doing that Thursday, whether it was harmless making out or something closer to public sex. Police audio obtained by TMZ indicates that officers informed Watts that someone had reported the couple was committing "lewd acts in a car."

Whether it's indecent exposure or lewd acts in public, California generally frowns on people (even celebrities) boinking in public view. It's unclear exactly what the complaining 911 caller saw, but the responding officers apparently chalked it up to a lewd act. In most states, kissing or even being topless is not a lewd act. TMZ reports that eyewitnesses saw Lucas in the front seat with Watts "straddling him."

Police didn't arrest Watts or Lucas, but Watts didn't make things easy.

Watts Refused to Give ID

When the Los Angeles police officers first approached the pair, Watts refused to give them her ID. You aren't legally required to carry an ID on you at all times, but you may be required to provide police with a full legal name. Watts may have been within her legal rights to refuse to provide officers with an ID, but she was likely tight-lipped about identifying herself.

Watts wasn't placed in handcuffs until she allegedly stormed away from the officer, only to be detained by another officer and cuffed.

In a Facebook post about the incident, Lucas writes that police "handcuffed [Watts] and threw her roughly into the back of the cop car until they could figure out who she was," reports CNN. Watts defended her decision to refuse to show her ID because she believes "in America and what it stands for."

The couple also apparently believes in asking for legal help. Despite there being no arrest, they've reportedly contacted lawyers, the ACLU, and the NAACP.

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