Daniele Watts, an African-American actress who has starred in Hollywood films such as Django Unchained, has claimed she was "handcuffed and detained" by Los Angeles police officers after being mistaken for a prostitute.
Two police officers approached Watts and her white husband Brian James Lucas when they were seen showing affection in public, the actress said in a Facebook post.
She claims she refused to produce her photo ID when asked by police, and was then handcuffed and held in a police car as the officers tried to figure out who she was. She reportedly cut her wrist as she was handled roughly by the LAPD officers.
The couple described the humiliating incident to Buzzfeed, saying they were kissing in Lucas' car outside the CBS Studio Center in Studio City when someone in a nearby office walked by and told them to "stop putting on a show".
Watts says she was fully dressed and only kissing when police were called to the scene, and asked for the couple's identification.
Lucas handed police his ID, but Watts refused and started walking away from the scene.
"I didn't have the stomach for someone on a power trip when I knew I hadn't done anything wrong," Watts told Buzzfeed.
Watts also posted pictures to Facebook, in which she is handcuffed and crying. She was released shortly afterwards.
"As I was sitting in the back of the police car, I remembered the countless times my father came home frustrated or humiliated by the cops when he had done nothing wrong, " she wrote in the post.
"I felt his shame, his anger, and my own feelings of frustration for existing in a world where I have allowed myself to believe that "authority figures" could control my BEING... my ability to BE!!!!!!!
She continued: "Those cops could not stop me from expressing myself. They could not stop the cathartic tears and rage from flowing out of me. They could not force me to feel bad about myself. Yes, they had control over my physical body, but not my emotions.
Her husband, Brian James Lucas, a chef, supported her account of the events in a social media posting of his own. He wrote: "From the questions that he asked me as D was already on her phone with her dad, I could tell that whoever called on us (including the officers), saw a tatted RAWKer white boy and a hot bootie shorted black girl and thought we were a HO (prostitute) & a TRICK (client).
"They handcuffed her and threw her roughly into the back of the cop car until they could figure out who she was. In the process of handcuffing her, they cut her wrist, which was truly NOT COOL!!!"
The incident comes weeks after California police officers detained an African American television producer who was travelling to a pre-Emmy Awards party. Charles Belk said he was unfairly treated because he "fitted a description".
An LAPD public information officer said there was no record of the incident as Watts wasn't arrested or brought into the station for questioning, according to Variety.
Next trending article:
- UK Independent with Daily Mail