VAN NUYS (CBSLA.com) — An actress who appeared in “Django Unchained” and her boyfriend pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges of lewd conduct after a witness reported the two were having sex inside a car on a Studio City street.
Daniele Watts and Brian James Lucas, a local chef, have each been charged with one misdemeanor count of lewd conduct, the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office reported.
On Sept. 11, officers were called around 3 p.m. to the 11900 block of Ventura Boulevard after receiving a report that a man and a woman were having sex inside a silver Mercedes-Benz with a door open, according to LAPD.
Police found Watts and Lucas at the scene and, according to their report, the actress refused to provide any identification.
In California, there is no absolute requirement to carry or provide identification upon demand.
“However, if you are being investigated for another offense and your identity is important to the investigation of the offense, then you must by state law comply with the legal officers and the legal authority of the officer, which is to request your I.D.,” LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said.
Officers detained Watts and placed her in handcuffs while they questioned her.
She and Lucas were eventually released.
The incident made headlines when Watts contacted news outlets, saying she was a victim of racial profiling. Watts is black and Lucas is white.
Several civil-rights activists came to Watts’ aid, calling on the LAPD for an internal investigation.
During that probe, one of the officers involved released an audiotape of his conversation with Watts, where she can be heard refusing to hand over I.D.
If convicted, Watts and Lucas face six months in jail and up to a $1,000 fine.
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